The King and Queen of Clay – French Open 2018

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There is no doubt that Rafael Nadal is the king of clay & his last win at the French Open just sums up his domination. 11 French Open titles are not only a record but also a statement aimed at those who called for curtains on his career.


Every coach says, “Play to your strengths.” That’s exactly what Rafael Nadal is doing. The Spanish superstar loves the clay court and he made a wise decision by missing a few masters tournaments to get ready for the clay season. The clay season started with a bang as Rafa captured 3 titles in 4 outings in Europe. The stage was set and it was only Rafa or his injuries which could stop the world number 1 from winning his 11th French Open title. He only dropped 1 set en route to the final where he was up against the “Prince of Clay” Dominic Thiem. The Austrian was the only one who had beaten Rafa on clay this year but no one was ready to bet against the Spaniard. A straight sets win for Rafael Nadal in the final at Paris got him to title number 16 and is still 4 Slams behind Roger Federer. Just like Federer, Rafa had cracked the code. Playing selective tennis and choosing tournaments wisely was the key to his success.


Just like Federer, Nadal has won it all but the only thing that possibly keeps the 32-year-old going is his determination to go past Fedex when it comes to the number of Grand Slam titles. He is 4 years younger than Federer and has just 3 Grand Slams less than the Swiss-Maestro. But with the way things are going for both Nadal and Federer, tennis fans like you and me are assured of some old-school rivalry for a few more years.


In the women’s section, it was Simona Halep who finally won a grand slam while playing her 4th slam final. Halep, the world number 1 is now the first Romanian in 40 years to win a grand slam. The 26-year-old was a set down in the final and it looked like the same old story for Halep but the Romanian fought back hard to beat Sloane Stephens.


Yash Chawla is former Sports Anchor of NDTV. With over 9 years of experience as a Sports Journalist, Yash now sails with Crowdynews.com

 


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