Monday, June 9, 2008

Vamos Rafael Nadal (The King of Clay) - 4th Consecutive French Open Champion

Rafael Nadal - First of all congratulations to Nadal on winning the French Open for the fourth consecutive time, equalling Bjorn Borg's record and he did it in the best ever way for a master on clay, routing Roger Federer 6-1, 6-3, 6-0 in the final. The match was also the second most one-sided final in French Open history after Guillermo Vilas' 6-0, 6-3, 6-0 demolition of Brian Gottfried in 1977. For most of the time on television, you would see Federer making his opponents run after the ball but its always in the French Open where the tables are turned and you could see Nadal making Federer work hard for points. Its as though Nadal's clay court dominance is the only obstacle that prevents Federer from becoming the best ever tennis player on the planet. Just how good Nadal is on clay, here are some statistics from tennis.com to prove it:

28-0 Nadal's record at the French Open. He had to pull out of the event with an injury the first year he was ranked high enough to play, but returned to win the following year and has been undefeated since.
4 The number of consecutive French Open titles Nadal has won. Only Bjorn Borg has matched the feat.
41-0 Nadal has never been beaten in any of the 41 best-of-five matches he's played on clay in his career.
41 The number of games Nadal lost in seven matches on his way to the title. That averages out to less than six per match. The greatest number of games he lost in any one match was 12to Novak Djokovic in the semifinals.
6 The number of sets Nadal has dropped at the rench Open during the past four years. He lost none this year and has never lost more than one in any given match.
22-1 His career record in clay finals. His only loss was to Roger Federer in Hamburg last year.
22-1 Nadal's record on clay this year. He lost to Juan Carlos Ferrero at Rome in a match where he was hampered by blisters.
115-2 Nadal's record on clay since April 2005, when he lost in Valencia to Igor Andreev.
155-14 Nadal's career record on clay. His overall career record is 297-73.
2 The number of times Nadal says he has really become nervous during a match at the French Open - a 6-4, 3-6, 6-0, 6-3 win against Sebastien Grosjean in the fourth round three years ago and a 5-7, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 win against Paul-Henri Mathieu in the third round two years ago. "A little bit against Mathieu first set, 2006... Against Grosjean with the problem with the crowd, 2005," he said . "No more times, I think."

With Wimbledon just around the corner, I can't wait for Nadal to dethrone Federer from his number one spot in the world.

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