Roland Garros 2018: Is Rafael Nadal’s draw good or bad?

The Roland Garros draw is out. Ten-time champion Rafael Nadal will play in the first round against Alexandr Dolgopolov.

In the second round, he could face Guido Pella or Joao Sousa. An encounter with Richard Gasquet could be on the cards in the third round.

If all goes well for our champion, he could face Canadian hotshot Denis Shapovalov or American Jack Sock in the fourth round. The King of Clay could come up against Kevin Anderson or Diego Schwartzman in the quarters. In the semifinals, he could be seen battling with Juan Martin del Potro or Marin Cilic.

C.Dubreuil / FFT

Rafa’s possible path to an 11th French Open title:

  • Round 1: Alexandr Dolgopolov
  • Round 2: Guido Pella or Joao Sousa
  • Round 3: Richard Gasquet
  • Round 4: Denis Shapovalov
  • Quarter Final: Diego Schwartzman
  • Semi Final: Marin Cilic
  • Final: Alexander Zverev

Roland Garros 2018 projected men’s singles quarterfinals:

  • Rafael Nadal vs Kevin Anderson
  • Marin Cilic vs Juan Martin del Potro
  • David Goffin vs Grigor Dimitrov
  • Alexander Zverev vs Dominic Thiem

Rafa has suffered just two losses in 81 matches at the clay-court Grand Slam championship – to Sweden’s Robin Soderling in the 2009 fourth round and to Novak Djokovic in the 2015 quarter-finals.

The Spanish superstar has a 19-1 clay-court record this year (23-2 overall), which includes 11th titles at both Monte-Carlo (d. Nishikori) and the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell (d. Tsitsipas), in addition to an eighth crown at last week’s Internazionali BNL d’Italia (d. A. Zverev).


Source: ATP World Tour


Rafael Nadal 2018 Roland Garros Nike Outfit

Rafael Nadal, the most decorated clay-court player in the history of tennis, will wear NikeCourt AeroReact Rafa top, Flex Ace shorts and Air Zoom Cage 3 footwear as he competes for his 11th title in Paris.

“As a design team, we wanted Rafa to feel powerful on the clay, and the flooded color really helps that because it’s overwhelming; it makes him look like a force of nature,” said Abby Swancutt, Apparel Design Director for NikeCourt.

What are your thoughts? Leave us a comment below!


Source: Nike

Rafael Nadal Ranked Eighth Most Famous Athlete By ESPN

ESPN today released its third-annual World Fame 100, which ranks the 100 most famous athletes on the planet, and Rafael Nadal ranked No. 8 on the list.

Luke Hemer/Tennis Australia

Cristiano Ronaldo heads the World Fame 100 list, followed by LeBron James in second and Lionel Messi in third.

The ESPN World Fame 100 is based on a formula created by ESPN’s director of sports analytics Ben Alamar, and combines salary, endorsements, social media following and Google search popularity.

Once again, Nadal picked himself up off the mat of injury to prove that he isn’t done chasing and challenging his nemesis, Roger Federer. Nadal, rebounding from a wrist injury that sidelined him for the second half of 2016, continued to offer fans a viable alternative to the artistry of Federer with his savagely physical game. The 31-year-old Mallorcan actually upstaged Federer on paper — if not in the hearts of fans. The men split the four Grand Slam titles, but Nadal finished the year ranked No. 1. Yet when Nadal opened his tennis academy in Mallorca, his guest of honor was his bro … Roger Federer. — Peter Bodo

There are 12 tennis players on the list.

No. 5 Roger Federer

No. 8 Rafael Nadal

No. 12 Serena Williams

No. 13 Novak Djokovic

No. 21 Maria Sharapova

No. 48 Venus Williams

No. 56 Andy Murray

No. 66 Caroline Wozniacki

No. 76 Stan Wawrinka

No. 77 Simona Halep

No. 98 Victoria Azarenka

No. 100 Sania Mirza

Click here to see the full list.

Source: ESPN

Rafa Roundup: Asking “Who can take a set off Rafael Nadal?” instead of “Who can beat Nadal?'”



Hot: No. 1 Rafael Nadal (17-1) – The record says it all. In fact, that lone loss to Dominic Thiem may have improved Nadal’s chance to win his 11th French Open. Nadal’s 21-match winning streak came to an end in that match, along with his record of 50 consecutive sets won. That all took pressure off Nadal. He showed in winning Rome last week that the loss just rekindled his ferocious appetite.

Nadal also has snuck ahead of Djokovic in two other areas: his overall Big Title count and his improved Big Title conversion rate. Nadal now has 48 Big Titles to Djokovic’s 47, and the Spaniard has won one Big Title every 3.47 opportunities, while Djokovic, who lost to Nadal in the Rome semi-finals, has won an average of one Big Title every 3.51 chances.

“Unless anything unforeseen happens to Rafa — his reputation is scaring everybody — so I’m just going to go over there and give him the trophy and come home,” the eight-times grand slam champion told Reuters.

Perhaps the question heading into next week’s French Open should be: “Who can take a set off Rafael Nadal?” instead of “Who can beat Nadal?'” The Spaniard, dubbed the “King of Clay,” is the white-hot favorite to land a record-extending 11th title at Roland Garros.

“Rafa is for me a clear-cut favorite to win No. 11,” six-time grand slam winner Boris Becker, who was coaching Djokovic when the Serb downed Nadal in Paris three years ago, told CNN Sport. “He’s by far the favorite. There are a couple of others coming around the block, but I wouldn’t even name them because in my eyes if Rafa stays healthy, injury free, I don’t see anybody taking it but him.”

In the third set on Sunday, Nadal took an excellent Zverev lob, one that appeared destined to get over his head, and knifed it away with a leaping skyhook overhead while looking in the other direction. That’s no baseline grinder’s shot; that’s a born tennis player’s shot, an artist’s shot.

Thirteen years after he first won in Rome, and a few weeks before his 32nd birthday, Nadal can still take the best shot from the new generation’s best player, and come up with something better.


VIDEO: Rafael Nadal Hits Overhead Smash Hot Shot (Rome Masters 2018)

Rafael Nadal shows off his athleticism and nails this overhead smash against Alexander Zverev at the Italian Open in Rome.

ATP Rankings: Rafa returns to No. 1

Rafael Nadal reclaimed the No. 1 spot in the men’s Association of Tennis Professionals world singles rankings released on Monday with 8,770 points, after winning his eighth Italian Open title. It’s a familiar spot for our champ, who’s beginning his 174th week at the top spot.

Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images

Defeating third-placed Alexander Zverev of Germany 6-1, 1-6, 6-3 in the final on Sunday, the 16-time Grand Slam champion overtook Roger Federer, who has decided to skip the clay season for the second year in a row.

Marin Cilic climbed to the fourth position, ahead of Grigor Dimitrov and Juan Martin del Potro.

The current ATP rankings and point scores are as follows:

1. Rafael Nadal (Spain) 8,770 points

2. Roger Federer (Switzerland) 8,670

3. Alexander Zverev (Germany) 5,615

4. Marin Cilic (Croatia) 4,950

5. Grigor Dimitrov (Bulgaria) 4,870

6. Juan Martin del Potro (Argentina) 4,450

7. Kevin Anderson (South Africa) 3,635

8. Dominic Thiem (Austria) 3,195

9. David Goffin (Belgium) 3,020

10. John Isner (USA) 2,955

Rafa moved up one spot past Juan Martin del Potro to No. 3 in the ATP Race To London — with 3,040 points — for a spot at the season finale, to be held at The O2 in London from 11-18 November.

Sources: ATP World Tour, EFE

Twitter reacts to Rafael Nadal’s triumph in Rome

Tennis fans, media and players worldwide celebrated as Rafael Nadal won a record-extending eighth Italian Open title with a three-sets win over Alexander Zverev in Sunday’s final in Rome.

Continue reading “Twitter reacts to Rafael Nadal’s triumph in Rome”