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Has Rafael Nadal Lost in French Open?

Published 05/24/2022, 2:37 AM EDT

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This surely is an extremely interesting question. Rafael Nadal and his veritable love affair with the French Open has indeed been a fairytale. The Spaniard, who is one of the greatest tennis players ever to play the game, has won the French Open title a record 13 times.

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This is the highest number of titles won by a person at any single event. Rafael Nadal turned pro in 2001 and rose to prominence quickly. His first French Open title came when he was just 19 years old in 2005. One can say that he has not looked back since!


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Rafael Nadal and his insane record at the French Open

Rafael Nadal’s French Open statistics are unprecedented. In fact, it is well known that clay is his favorite surface, but his sheer dominance on the red dirt has earned him the title ‘King of Clay’. He is widely regarded as the greatest clay-court player in the history of the sport, and quite rightly so. His statistics on this surface are unmatched, and he is certainly far ahead of his contemporaries.

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He also boasts an incredible record of 81 consecutive wins on clay, which is the longest single-surface match winning streak in the Open Era.


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Has Rafael Nadal ever lost at the French Open?

While that might sound like a ridiculous question, the answer is still awe-inspiring. Yes, he has lost at the French Open. But out of the 16 times that he took part in the tournament, he has only lost 6 times. He has played 108 matches at the Roland Garros and has won 105 of them!

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Nadal’s losses at the tournament

There are just two people who have managed to defeat Nadal at Roland Garros so far.

His first one came against Robin Soderling. The Swede created history in 2009 by pulling off what was the season’s greatest upset. On his way to victory, Soderling hit 61 winners to get the better of Nadal that day. Nadal lost in the fourth round with a 2-6, 7-6(2), 4-6, 6-7(2) scoreline, in a match that will be remembered for a long time!


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Even though it seems like a big deal, it later turned out that Rafael Nadal might have been dealing with an injury throughout the season. The loss also did not hamper his love affair with French Open as he returned in 2010, and won the title four years in a row.

via Reuters

The other player to have defeated Nadal in Paris is Novak Djokovic. He has defeated Nadal, once in 2015 in the quarterfinal, and again in the 2021 semifinal. With his win in 2015, Djokovic effectively ended Nadal’s 5-year run at the tournament. The Serb’s second victory in 2021 was quite impressive as he won from being a set down. Djokovic incidentally is also the player who has won the most sets against Nadal at the French Open.


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Watch this Story: Top Five Moments of Rafael Nadal at Monte Carlo Masters

While Nadal’s record here is almost perfect, we have to see what 2022 holds for the Spaniard. He has been dealing with some recurring injury issues of late, one with a fracture in his ribs, and the other one with his feet. We, however, will be hoping that he will overcome the challenges and triumph in Paris for an unprecedented 14th time.

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Written by:

Rishma Banerjee


One take at a time

Rishma Banerjee is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having done her masters in Political Science with International Relations from Jadavpur University, Rishma's outlet from the hustle-bustle of academics has always been sports, especially Tennis. A die-hard fan of Rafael Nadal, she admires his grit, determination and dedication towards always being better. When not writing content for firms dealing with fintech to social media marketing to sports, she finds herself in journals and books dealing with geopolitics and strategic studies or scrolling endlessly through Tumblr!
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Edited by:

Tony Thomas