Rafa Nadal seals fantastic 14th French Open title at Roland Garros

Rafael Nadal continued his incredible dominance at Roland Garros by landing a 14th French Open title at the expense of Casper Ruud on Sunday.

Nadal followed up January’s Australian Open triumph by making it back-to-back Grand Slams to take his overall tally to 22 – two clear of rivals Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer.

Two days after his 36th birthday, Nadal affirmed his position as ‘the king of clay’ by maintaining his unbeaten record in French Open finals and crushing Ruud’s hopes of a maiden Grand Slam title.

Nadal dominated the final from the outset, overpowering his young opponent to clinch a straight sets victory in two hours and 18 minutes.

“It’s amazing the things that are happening this year,” said Nadal on court.

“For me personally, it’s very difficult to describe the feelings that I have.

“It’s something that I never believed to be here at 36 – being competitive again, playing on the most important court of my career. It means [an awful] lot to me.

“I don’t know what will happen in the future, but I’m going to keep fighting!”

Nadal settled quickly into the final on his beloved Court Philippe-Chatrier, racing into a 4-1 lead before eventually serving out the first set 6-3.

Ruud, the first Norwegian ever to reach a Grand Slam men’s single final, dug deep in the second set to open up a 3-1 lead, but only for Nadal to break and reel off five consecutive games to double his advantage.

Ruud seemingly failed to recover from that body blow and was a mere spectator for much of a rapid third set as Nadal rattled off a further six unanswered games to ruthlessly clinch the crown.

Nadal becomes the oldest French Open men’s singles champion and surpasses fellow Spaniard Andres Gimeno – who triumphed aged 34 back in 1972.

He has claimed back-to-back major titles for the first time since 2010 and now has the opportunity to challenge for a first seasonal Grand Slam, with Wimbledon and the US Open still to come.

A chronic foot problem threatened to spell the end of Nadal’s glittering career during the back end of last season, while a stress fracture of the rib caused him to miss two months of action shortly after winning the Australian Open.

However, the legendary Spaniard looks set to continue his quest for further silverware in the coming months and continues to defy the sands of time.

Ruud had beaten Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Emil Ruusuvuori, Lorenzo Sonego, Hubert Hurkacz, Holger Rune and Marin Cilic en route to his first major final but was denied glory by his idol, whom he watched from the stands here in 2013.

The 23-year-old will climb to a career-high world number six on Monday and has announced his arrival as a key contender for Grand Slams in the years to come.

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Iga Swiatek claimed her second French Open title after defeating Coco Gauff 6-1 6-3 in the final on Saturday.

The world number one became the 10th multiple female champion at Roland Garros of the Open Era as she wrapped up victory in just 68 minutes on Chatrier.

Already a champion in Doha, Indian Wells, Miami, Stuttgart and Rome this season, Swiatek is the first player to win six successive titles on the WTA tour since Justine Henin between 2007 and 2008.

The 21-year-old also extended her winning streak to a record-equalling 35 matches, while becoming the youngest multiple Slam winner since a then 19-year-old Maria Sharapova doubled her career tally at the 2006 US Open.

This was the youngest female final at Roland Garros since Martina Hingis and Iva Majoli contested the 1997 Championship match.

But the nerves were evident in maiden Slam finalist Gauff, who was the sixth American of the Open Era to reach the final in the French capital without dropping a set.

The unforced errors quickly tallied up for the 18-year-old and the in-form Swiatek, who had won 54 of her previous 56 sets, took full advantage.

An early double-break saw the Pole quickly stamp her authority on proceedings as she opened up a 4-0 lead, before holding to wrap up the opening set in just 35 minutes.

Gauff responded well with a break and hold at the start of the second, but her third double fault of the final enabled her opponent to break back and level at 2-2.

It was very much one-way traffic from there; Swiatek making it five consecutive games as she moved to the brink of a second title in Paris.

Gauff stopped the rot and held for 5-3, but she only delayed the inevitable momentarily. Her opponent required no second opportunity to add to her ever-growing silverware collection.

Rafael Nadal returned to the clay courts of Roland Garros and claimed another title, increasing his own record to 14 French Open titles. 

The King of Clay was dethroned by Novak Djokovic at last year’s French Open, losing to the Serb in the semis in what was his third defeat in 108 matches at the Paris major but the Spaniard was able to return to favour this year when Nadal secured the win at the quarter final stage.

That match was set up when Spaniard, who is managing a foot injury, reached the last eight by beating Felix Auger-Aliassime in round four. Nadal strode into the second slam of the year off the back of early exits in Madrid and Rome, and had arrived at Roland Garros having failed to reach at least one clay court Masters 1000 final for the first time.

But he proved he is still able to hang with the elite when he beat Casper Ruud in straight sets on Sunday, regaining his status as king of the clay.

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Rafael Nadal potential route to French Open final

Round Opponent
Round one Beat Jordan Thompson 6-2, 6-2, 6-2
Round two Beat Corentin Moutet 6-3, 6-1, 6-4
Round three Beat Botic van de Zandschulp 6-3, 6-2, 6-4
Round four Beat Felix Auger-Aliassime 3-6, 6-3, 6-2. 3-6, 6-3
Quarter-final  Beat Novak Djokovic 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7-4)
Semi-final Beat Alexander Zverev 7-6 (10-8), 6-6 (Zverev retired)
Final Beat Casper Ruud 6-3, 6-3, 6-0

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Alexander Zverev has seen his French Open campaign end in misery after being dumped out at the semi-final stage.

The world No3, who has two ATP Finals crowns and an Olympic gold, is yet to win one of tennis’s four majors and his hunt for that elusive title continues after his defeat to clay specialist, Rafael Nadal.

Zverev was forced to retire near the end of the second set, following a lengthy injury treatment. The match looked very tight until that point with the first set decided on a tie breaker and the second headed in the same direction.

Victory for Nadal sets up a final against Casper Rudd, where the Spaniard will be hoping to win his 14th French Open title, breaking his own record in the process.

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Alexander Zverev possible route to French Open final

Round Opponent
Round one Beat Sebastian Ofner 6-2, 6-4, 6-4
Round two Beat Sebastian Baez 2-6, 4-6, 6-1, 6-2, 7-5
Round three Beat Brandon Nakashima 7-6, 6-3, 7-6
Round four Beat Bernabé Zapata Miralles 7-6 (13-11), 7-5, 6-3
Quarter-final Beat Carlos Alcaraz 6-4, 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (9-7)
Semi-final  Lost to Rafael Nadal 6-7 (8-10), 6-6 (Zverev forced to retire)
Final

French Open latest odds men’s singles

Player Sky Bet Paddy Power
Rafael Nadal 1/6 1/7
Casper Ruud 4/1 4/1
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Rafael Nadal booked his place in a 14th French Open final after Alexander Zverev was forced to retire injured from their last-four clash on Friday.

A thoroughly gripping contest was unfolding at Roland Garros, where birthday boy Nadal had taken a mammoth opening set 7-6(8) after 91 minutes.

The Spaniard, who turned 36 on Friday, had just forced a second successive tie-break as the match entered its fourth hour when Zverev suffered a horrific fall on his right ankle.

A harrowing yell echoed around Chatrier as the German was immediately tended to by the medical team, before leaving the court in a wheelchair.

The third seed subsequently returned on crutches a few minutes later to reluctantly concede; making Nadal the oldest male finalist at Roland Garros since William Tilden in 1930.

Appearing in his fifth Grand Slam semi-final, Zverev made a confident start by breaking Nadal in the opening game on the way to leading 4-2.

Although, he was forced to rescue three set points after his opponent broke back to edge 5-4 ahead. The third seed then surged into a 6-2 lead in the tie-break, but saw four set points go begging as Nadal clung on before drawing first blood.

The 13-time champion had prevailed in 269 of his previous 276 matches when winning the opening set in a Slam.

He would continue that impressive record, but only after an equally tight second set that also went to a tie-break after Zverev had led 4-2.

And the 25-year-old’s wait for a maiden Slam goes on following his untimely fall – after which he was unable to place any weight on his right foot.

Through to major final number 30, Nadal will face Casper Ruud after the Norwegian advanced to his first such showpiece.

The eighth seed beat Marin Cilic 3-6 6-4 6-2 6-2 to become the first male player from his country to reach the final of a Slam – and first from Scandinavia since Sweden’s Robin Soderling in 2010.

Ruud was broken twice in the opening set by Cilic, who was the fifth active player on the ATP tour to appear in the semi-finals of all four Slams.

But unforced errors plagued the former US Open champion, who registered 56 throughout the contest.

Ruud capitalised by levelling before seizing control by breaking opponent twice in the third set.

Although play was temporarily suspended due to a protester evading security, the Norwegian’s momentum could not be stopped as he breezed through to a first major Championship match.

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Iga Swiatek will play Coco Gauff in the French Open final following a commanding 6-2 6-1 victory over Daria Kasatkina on Thursday.

The world number one extended her winning streak to 34 matches after taking just over an hour to see off the 20th seed on Chatrier.

Swiatek – a five-time WTA winner in 2022 – became the first player to reach six or more finals during the opening six months of a WTA season since Serena Williams in 2013.

The 21-year-old is also the youngest female player to win 20 matches at Roland Garros since Martina Hingis 23 years ago.

Despite an early double-fault and seeing a break immediately cancelled out, Swiatek quickly took control against Kasatkina, who was appearing in her maiden semi-final at a Grand Slam having reeled off 10 successive sets without reply.

The top seed won 10 from 12 points on her first serve, while her opponent registered 15 unforced errors as she pulled away from 2-2 and broke to love to take the opening set.

The Pole only dropped one more game thereon as the pressure on the 20th seed began to tell. Indeed, she won 20 of the last 23 points to reach yet another final.

Standing in her way will be Gauff, who also saw off Martina Trevisan in straight sets 6-3 6-1.

The 18-year-old became the third-youngest female finalist at a Slam since 2000 – and youngest at Roland Garros since Kim Clijsters (2001).

Junior champion here in 2018, Gauff had lost her previous meeting with world number 59 Trevisan, who was also appearing in her first Slam semi-final.

But the teenager ensured there was no repeat of that second-round reverse from 2020.

After both players saw their service broken twice in the opening six games, Gauff established her authority on proceedings; winning nine of the last 10 to cruise through to the Championship match without dropping a single set.

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Marin Cilic is through to his first Grand Slam semi-final in four years after overcoming Andrey Rublev in a last-eight thriller at the French Open on Wednesday.

The former US Open champion prevailed 5-7 6-3 6-4 3-6 7-6(2) in a highly entertaining clash on Chatrier that lasted four hours and 10 minutes.

Cilic becomes the fifth active player on the ATP tour to reach at least the semi-finals of all four majors after Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray.

The 32-year-old, who hit a whopping 88 winners, is also the first Croatian male to progress to the last four at Roland Garros since Ivan Ljubicic in 2006.

Targeting his maiden semi-final appearance at a Slam at the fifth attempt, Rublev drew first blood in a 58-minute opener.

But Cilic, who stunned second seed Daniil Medvedev in straight sets in round four, hit back by winning the next two sets.

Rublev responded to force a decider, in which the seventh seed saved match point as the contest went to a tie-break.

But it was one-way traffic thereon as Cilic dominated to book a last-four date with Casper Ruud.

The Norwegian secured his place in a Slam semi-final for the first time after defeating Danish teenager Holger Rune, who stunned 2021 runner-up Stefanos Tsitsipas in the previous round, 6-1 4-6 7-6(2) 6-3.

Earlier in the day, Iga Swiatek extended her winning streak to 33 matches – a tally now only bettered by Serena and Venus Williams on the WTA tour since 2000.

The world number one, who celebrated her 21st birthday on Tuesday, took just 89 minutes to wrap up a commanding 6-3 6-2 victory over Jessica Pegula.

The next challenger to Swiatek’s streak will be Daria Kasatkina, who advanced to her first Slam semi-final after seeing off Veronika Kudermetova 6-4 7-6(5).

The 20th seed is still yet to drop a set during her record-breaking run, and has now won 12 matches on clay in 2022; her joint-best tally for a single season.

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French Open 2022 Day 11 Results

Wednesday June 1

Quarter-Finals

COURT PHILIPPE-CHATRIER
Veronika Kudermetova 4-6 6-7(5) Daria Kasatkina
Iga Swiatek 6-3 6-2 Jessica Pegula
Andrey Rublev 7-5 4-6 3-6 6-3 6-7(2) Marin Cilic
Casper Ruud 6-1 4-6 7-6(2) 6-3 Holger Rune

Rafael Nadal reached his 15th French Open Quarter-Final courtesy of a thrilling four-set win over rival Novak Djokovic in a marathon contest.

Nadal continued his longstanding love affair with the Court Philippe Chatrier as he produced another memorable display to dethrone the reigning champion at Roland Garros.

The 13-time French Open winner had suffered a four-set defeat to Djokovic in last year’s Semi-Finals but turned the tables to remain in contention for a second successive Grand Slam title.

Nadal made a commanding start by storming to the opening set 6-2 and looked in control of the second at 3-0 ahead, but only for Djokovic to battle back and level at 3-3 after a sixth game which lasted almost 20 minutes.

The Serb went on to seal the set 6-4 to restore parity, but an early break from Nadal in the third paved the way for a 4-1 lead after a costly double-fault from his opponent.

The Spaniard went on to clinch the set 6-2, but as the temperatures fell in Paris and the clock approached midnight, Djokovic dug deep again and broke for a 2-0 lead in the fourth.

However, he was to left to rue two missed set points at 5-3, and Nadal seized his route back into the set to put the game back on serve.

The number five seed quickly took control of the tie break and wasted no time in sealing victory to confirm a Semi-Final show-down with Alexander Zverev.

“It was an emotional night and I still play for nights like tonight,” said Nadal. “To win against Novak there is only one way: to play your best from the first point to the last.

“This is one of those magic nights for me.

“But it is just a quarter-final and I still have a semi-final to come. I will stay emotionally stable and get ready for the semi-final.”

Third seed Zverev had earlier secured his place in a second successive French Open Semi-Final with a four-set victory over emerging sensation Carlos Alcaraz.

The German star stormed into a two-set lead, before Alcaraz clinched the third 6-4 to grab a lifeline, but only for Zverev to hold his nerve in a fourth set tie break to deny the 19-year-old a first appearance in a Grand Slam Semi-Final.

Earlier in the day, 18-year-old Coco Gauff progressed to her first Grand Slam singles Semi-Final courtesy of a straight sets win over fellow American Sloane Stephens.

Gauff will now face the unseeded Martina Trevisan – who became the first Italian female since 2013 to reach the French Open Semi-Finals after she defeated Leylah Fernandez 6-2, 6-7, 6-3.

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French Open 2022 – Day Ten Results

Tuesday May 31

Quarter-Finals

COURT PHILIPPE-CHATRIER
11am Martina Trevisan 6-2, 6-7, 6-3 Leylah Fernandez
12.30pm Coco Gauff 7-5, 6-2 Sloane Stephens
3pm Alexander Zverev 6-4, 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 Carlos Alcaraz
7.45pm Novak Djokovic 2-6, 6-4, 2-6, 6-7 Rafael Nadal

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Daniil Medvedev crashed out of the French Open after going down in straight sets 6-2 6-3 6-2 against an inspired Marin Cilic on Monday.

Medvedev was one of two top-four seeds to fall in the fourth round at Roland Garros, with 2021 runner-up Stefanos Tsitsipas beaten by Danish teenager Holger Rune 7-5 3-6 6-3 6-4.

The second seed had arrived in the last 16 unscathed, having reeled off nine sets without reply in the opening three rounds.

He had also won all three of his previous meetings with Cilic ahead of their first encounter on clay.

But the former US Open champion hit the ground running on Chatrier; breaking his opponent twice as he won the last four games of the opening set to draw first blood.

And Cilic did not relent as he built on his momentum in the next two sets to roar through to his third Roland Garros quarter-final – and first in four years.

Next up for the 20th seed is Andrey Rublev, who overcame Jannik Sinner after the Italian was forced to retire through injury at 1-6 6-4 2-0 behind.

Meanwhile, Tsitsipas suffered only his fourth defeat in 21 matches on clay this year after coming unstuck against Rune.

The world number 40 became the first Danish man to reach a Grand Slam quarter-final since Jan Leschly reached the last four of the 1967 US Championships.

Rune sets up a showdown with Norway’s maiden male quarter-finalist at Roland Garros in eighth seed Casper Ruud, who hit 42 winners in his 6-2 6-3 3-6 6-3 victory over Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz.

In the ladies’ draw, top seed Iga Swiatek reached the last eight for a third successive year, but only after coming from behind against Chinese teenager Xinwen Zheng.

Indeed, Swiatek lost the opening set as her opponent recovered from 3-0 to prevail in a tie-break 7-6(5).

However, the world number one dominated the next two 6-0 6-2 to claim her 32nd successive victory; putting her level with Justine Henin for the third-longest streak in the WTA since 2000.

Her reward is a showdown with 11th seed Jessica Pegula, who also overturned a one-set deficit to beat Irina-Camelia Begu 4-6 6-2 6-3 and reach her second successive quarter-final at this event.

Daria Kasatkina continued her hugely impressive run at Roland Garros with a comprehensive 6-2 6-2 win over Camila Giorgi.

The 20th seed has now reeled off eight sets without reply, while dropping just 14 games along the way.

Aiming to stop her in the last eight is Veronika Kudermetova, who extended her best-ever performance at a Slam by overcoming Madison Keys 1-6 6-3 6-1.

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French Open 2022 Day Nine Results

Monday May 30

Round Four

COURT PHILIPPE-CHATRIER
Veronika KUDERMETOVA [29] 1-6 6-3 6-1 Madison KEYS (USA) [22]
Holger RUNE (DEN) 7-5 3-6 6-3 6-4 Stefanos TSITSIPAS (GRE) [4]
Iga SWIATEK (POL) [1] 6-7(5) 6-0 6-2 Qinwen ZHENG (CHN)
Marin CILIC (CRO) [20] 6-2 6-3 6-2 Daniil MEDVEDEV [2]

COURT SUZANNE-LENGLEN
Daria KASATKINA [20] 6-2 6-2 Camila GIORGI (ITA) [28]
Casper RUUD (NOR) [8] 6-2 6-3 3-6 6-3 Hubert HURKACZ (POL) [12]
Jessica PEGULA (USA) [11] 4-6 6-2 6-3 Irina-Camelia BEGU (ROU)
Andrey RUBLEV [7] 1-6 6-4 2-0 ret. Jannik SINNER (ITA) [11]

The tennis elite head to Roland Garros for the 2022 French Open, and a live stream is available for all matches.

The second Grand Slam of the season will take place in Paris from May 22 to June 5 on clay court surface.

Both the men’s and women’s events will feature 128 players battling it out for a prize pool of around €43.6 million in the 126th edition of the prestigious major.

World number one Novak Djokovic is the defending champion in men’s singles, while Barbora Krejčíková is the defending champion in the women’s singles.

Rafael Nadal is the record 13-time French Open champion, having won four of the last five stagings, and is bidding to take his overall tally to 22 Grand Slam titles.

The likes of Daniil Medvedev, Alexander Zverev, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Carlos Alcaraz are vying to get their hands on this famous trophy for the first time.

Women’s world number one Iga Świątek arrives at Roland-Garros amid a 28-match winning streak, while Angelique Kerber is attempting to complete the career Grand Slam.

All matches are available to watch live on laptop, mobile or tablet devices for users in various regions worldwide.

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