Roland Garros 2021: Who will first win the 21st Grand Slam Title?
French Open 2021: Who will first win the 21st Grand Slam Title?
Roland Garros 2021
Once upon a time Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal dominated the world of tennis like the water dominated the earth. Both players have won 20 grand slam titles each. Thus, going to this year’s Roland Garros in Paris, the question is who will first win the 21st Grand Slam Title?
Rafael Nadal is still up there at the zenith of tennis courts, currently ranked No. 3, despite his age. The emergence of World No.1, Novak Djokovic, and other new talented players in recent years have made the competition tougher. The older but once a great player, Roger Federer has however regressed lately, and that is not surprising considering his age and injuries.
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The 39-year-old Swiss last won his Grand Slam title in 2018 at the Australian Open, beating Marin Čilić in the final, 6–2, 6–7(5–7), 6–3, 3–6, 6–1 to claim his 20th Grand Slam title, and becoming the highest record holder at the time.
Rafael Nadal, 35, however, has bounced back since withdrawing from the 2018 Australian Open due to injury at a quarter-final stage. He has since won additional four Grand Slam titles, with the recent coming from last year’s French Open, making him tie Roger Federer (20) in the number of Grand Slam titles won so far.
Hence, this year French Open is perfectly set for either of them to continue to add more titles to their name. But who would win it? Will Rafael Nadal, the King of Clay, trump his perennial rival for the first time in the number of Grand Slam titles won, and become the highest record holder by June 13? Or the Swiss former World No.1 would defy all odds, and show us why he’s regarded as arguably the greatest of all-time tennis players? Perhaps, Novak Djokovic could help settle the score between these two greats, and win his 19th Grand Slam title, making him one short of the two above him.
At age 39, with ATP ranking at No.8, Roger Federer’s chance of becoming the first tennis player to win the 21st Grand Slam title is not that bright. Even though he has been training hard, and free from injury, given the fact that he hasn’t played single competitive tennis for five months until his recent loss against lower-ranked Pablo Andujar in clay court masters show he has a mountain to climb if he wants to win this year’s Roland Garros.
Despite his illustrious career with 20 grand slam titles, with an incredible sum of 104 titles overall, Federer has only managed to win one French Open title, in five times attempt, beating Robin Soderling in a 6–1, 7–6, 6–4 in 2009 final, but losing the other four finals to no other than the King of Clay himself, Rafael Nadal.
Though, Federer has won 11 titles on clay court overall with a win proportion of 223 out of 294 matches played. Yet, if he wants to win his 21st grand slam title in the coming days, he would need to be at his very best and beat the other top-ranked players who are also in great form.
Grand Slam Title History
- French Open – 2009
- Australian Open – 2004, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2017, 2018
- Wimbledon – 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2017
- US Open – 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008
- Feelings towards the 2021 French Open
Before the beginning of the tournament, Roger Federer declared that the recent delay in the French Open games has affected his preparations drastically, however, he is well prepared for whatever comes his way.
Speaking with Reuters, the Swiss maestro and the father of twins declared that “I’m convinced that hitting a lot of balls – you have to power through the ball like you have to on clay because otherwise, you’re not going to have an impact on this surface.”
Rafael Nadal – The King of Clay
If there is a good chance to win the 21st grand slam title for the Spaniard, former world number one, and currently ranked No.3, this is the best opportunity for Rafael Nadal. Having won a record of 13 French Open titles in his 13 final attempts, the King of Clay appears to be on course for another title victory, except unforeseen injury comes up.
With an almost invincible record of 100 wins out of 102 games, Nadal is still the one to look out for in this tournament. The 35-year-old Spanish player only lost twice against Novak Djokovic and Robin Soderling.
Nadal’s recent form has shown he is ready to dominate his favorite court, having won the recent Italian Open final against World No.1 Novak Djokovic, in a 7-5, 1-6, 6-3 result, claiming his 10th Rome Masters title.
Rafael Nadal has shown that when it comes to Clay court, he is still the one to beat. Before the 2021 French Open, he held 459 out of his 501 contests on clay, with an incredible record of 62 titles out of 78.
Grand Slam Title History
- French Open: 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020
- Australian Open (2009)
- Wimbledon: 2008, 2010
- US Open: 2010, 2013, 2017, 2019
Following his straight-set win in the first round over Alexei Popyrin in a 6-3, 6-2, 7-6 (3), Nadal has declared he is happy to be here and raring to go, “Of course the conditions of last year for me at the end have been good because I won. That’s the thing, no? But that’s passed. This year, we come back to a normal date. So, yeah, warm conditions. I think everybody is much more comfortable playing under these conditions than in the other ones. That’s what we are used to playing here in Roland Garros. Yeah, I am happy for that,” he claimed.
Roland Garros 2021: Big threat for Nadal & Federer
Aside from arguably the two greatest tennis players ever to grace the tennis court, Novak Djokovic with the 18th grand slam title is rightly being them, and he could be the one to win the title and come closer to one grand slam behind them. With a positive head-to-head record over Federer 23 – 27 and Rafael Nadal, 28 – 29 one shouldn’t rule out the possibility of snatching the Roland Garros title from their claws.
The French Open 2021 has begun already; you can follow the games live by checking the link. The tournament will surely feature upsets, defeats, and victories along the way to the end, but come June 13, whether Nadal, Federer or whoever wins the title, the winner would ultimately be a player that deserves it.