Nadal is on a roll now. There is no stopping the bull. Theim is a quality player to beat and Nadal handled him with relative ease. Should we just hand him the La Coupe des Mousquetaires already?
It seems beating Rafa at the Roland Garros this year may not be an option however there are certain styles of play which could cause him problems and if, for the next three weeks, millions of Rafa detractors can also keep their fingers crossed while constantly visualizing Rafa’s loss then who knows what magic might transpire!
So how can Nadal be bothered, if not beaten, by another player at the French Open?
An inspired player can turn into a mix of Soderling and Wawarinka combined. Flatten those ground shots and crank that serve to keep Nadal on the run and off-balance from the weight and speed of those shots. Now that’s a tough play to execute over two sets let alone five grueling ones and five exhausting hours against Nadal, however it is worth a shot.
There is also a chance that “the Federer” could miraculously execute his newfound AO, Indian Wells and Miami Open backhand equally effectively on clay against Nadal and thereby manage to bother, if no beat, him.
And there is always the remote possibility that an in-form, on fire, hard hitting, fast serving and never tiring player could lace his sports drink with PED and play out of his skin to really trouble Nadal. However, that player must be a well known entity, somewhat, if not very, popular, and in the top 20s so that he too can be welcomed, marketed and even hyped, like Sharapova by the WTA, upon his return to the tour assuming that by some quirk of ill-luck he is actually caught red handed with PEDs coursing through his veins. However, much like Sharapova’s PED laced attempt to take down Serena in the AO 2016, there is no guarantee that even a player on PEDs can beat Nadal this year.
Is the WTA listening?