Rafa Nadal French Open 2022

“Turn it into a skiing race” – Key to beating Rafa Nadal at French Open revealed by Slam legend

To beat Rafa Nadal you have to ‘look at his birth certificate’ and make the match last as long as possible.

That’s the advice given by Mats Wilander if Casper Rudd is to stand a chance of breaking the ‘King of Clay’s’ dominance at the French Open.

Ruud faces the toughest challenge in tennis which is to beat Rafa Nadal in a French Open final. No-one has ever achieved the feat with Nadal winning every final he’s played without even being extended to a 5th set.

But Eurosport commentator Mats Wilander says that Ruud is probably going to try and play a risk taking style of match to begin with but if this fails and he needs a plan B then focussing on the fact that Nadal is one of the older players on Tour could be the ticket to success.

“If I was Casper I would most probably look at Rafa’s birth certificate, he’s played a few tough matches, just turned 36 years old, there’s no pressure on Casper, and I think Casper is going to play risky and step into the court. If he needs a Plan B then he should be thinking about turning it into a Norwegian cross country race in skiing and try and make the match go forever. That would be my plan if I was Casper, but of course we know Rafa has won 13 times.

“As a Scandinavian, I don’t think Casper will be nervous but he will need to serve as well as he did against Marin Cilic because he will need free points against Rafa Nadal. Casper hits the ball with so much spin that I’m not Rafa knows what he can do in terms of spin on a ball. I think Casper should feel good not necessarily about winning, but being able to play Rafa the right way.”

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Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.