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Nadal: Federer the favourite

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Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:31

There will be a new name on the trophy this year following Nadal’s shock defeat by Sweden’s Robin Soderling in the fourth round, leaving the door ajar for Murray.

But the Spaniard believes there are other candidates more likely to be his successor, saying; “(Roger) Federer is the favourite, in my opinion. That would be great. He’s tried to win it for many years and he was very unfortunate to lose three finals and one semi-final (all to Nadal).”

He added: “If one guy deserves it, it’s him. There is also (Nikolay) Davydenko. (Juan Martin) Del Potro is there I think. We will see.”

Murray’s name was conspicuous by its absence but the Scot certainly has a great chance now.

The third seed set up a quarter-final meeting with Chile’s Fernando Gonzalez thanks to Sunday’s straight-sets win over Marin Cilic.

Gonzalez, the 12th seed, earned his place in the last eight by hitting 50 winners in a 6-2 6-4 6-2 victory over beleaguered 30th seed Victor Hanescu.

Murray became the third British man, after Roger Taylor in 1973 and Tim Henman in 2004, to reach this stage at Roland Garros.

“Every time you do something like that, it’s nice,” said Murray. Tim obviously made the semis here so it would nice to try and match that. I always felt I could play well on clay.”

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