Nadal Bidding to Avert Early French Open Exit

Mon May 27 2024
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PARIS: Rafael Nadal has admitted that he will be facing “one of the toughest rivals possible” when he plays Alexander Zverev in the French Open first round on Monday.

This year’s event was likely to be the 14-time champion’s farewell to Roland Garros, but he has since insisted he could not confirm it would be his last appearance.

Rafael Nadal has played four tournaments since January 2023 following suffering a hip injury and then a muscle tear. World number four Zverev has arrived in Paris as one of the favourites for the title following winning the Rome Open earlier in May.

Talking to media, Rafael Nadal said that he is going to play against one of the toughest rivals possible, and at the same time but he came here to win the event.  However, he admitted that it is not an easy contest for him.

Nadal has shown flashes of his best form in the clay-court swing, but was thrashed 6-1, 6-3 by Hubert Hurkacz in the second round of his last trip in Rome. Responding to a question, he said that he is not anxious and will focus on trying to play well.

On the other hand, Zverev did not play again in 2022 following that ankle injury but has climbed the rankings again recently.

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