23-year-old Norwegian Casper Ruud faced his idol Rafael Nadal in the men’s final of the French Open 2022 on Sunday June 5. Becoming the first-ever from his country to reach a major final, Ruud had no answer against Nadal as Spainard won the battle 6-3, 6-3, 6-0 in straight sets.
It was a dominant display from Nadal. While he won the first set, 6-3, in no time, he fell behind in the second set as Ruud led 3-1. However, the 36-year-old upped his game to bounce back and demolished his opposition in a jiffy to seal the final and win his 14th French Open trophy, also winning his 22nd Grand Slam title overall.
After the proceedings, Ruud praised Nadal and revealed how not to play against him on clay. “Well, I wish I had known the answers too, but I had a cheap break of serve, I think, in the second set and I was leading 3-1, and of course I wanted the game to go on. and maybe try to win the set,” Ruud said in a post-match press conference.
“But then he stepped up and he showed that when he needed to, he played very well. It was difficult for me to really know where I should play the ball. When you play defensively against Rafa on clay, he will eat you alive” Ruud opined.
“I said before the game that I guess that’s the case. But now I think I know that. At least what I faced. It’s really difficult and very difficult. But I already knew that in a way,” added Ruud, who also trained at Rafael Nadal’s academy.
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At 36, Nadal battled injury issues to reach the top clash at Roland Garros and returned with the elusive trophy. After the final, he opened up about his future and his participation in Wimbledon and said: “I will be at Wimbledon if my body is ready to be at Wimbledon. Wimbledon is not a tournament that I want to miss. Wimbledon is a priority, always has been a priority If I’m able to play with anti-inflammatories yes. To play with anesthetic injections, I don’t want to put myself back in this position. is not the philosophy of life that I want to follow. Let’s see. I’m always a positive guy and I always expect things to go the right way. Let’s be confident, let’s be positive and see what happens “, Nadal said.
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Post expires at 6:10pm on Thursday June 16th, 2022