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Sports Then and Now

David Ferrer Targets French Open Glory

Posted on April 25, 2011 by Pete South

David Ferrer hopes this is the year he can get past Rafael Nadal at the French Open.

David Ferrer must be sick of the sight of Rafael Nadal. His Barcelona Open final defeat by the world number one was his second tour final loss to that player in a week and his fifth at the hands of Nadal in his career, all of which have come on clay. In reality he should be encouraged, as any player who regularly runs into Nadal must be doing something right, as it generally means you are playing well enough to reach the latter stages of tournaments.

Those Monte Carlo and Barcelona defeats saw Ferrer push Nadal closer than most have in the king of clay’s current 34-match unbeaten run on the red stuff. He broke the champion on numerous occasions and created plenty of break points, leading 4-2 in the second set in Spain, but lacked the consistency to produce an upset.

In truth Nadal was not at his best in either match, a worrying sign for his rival that suggests a sixth French Open title is inevitable. It is certainly true that Ferrer is one of his likeliest challengers, although the calf injury he picked up in the Barcelona is a slight concern and those looking for French Open tips should bear this in mind.

Ferrer dumped an injury-affected Nadal out of the Australian Open, a win which gave him his second slam semi final appearance. Tour wins in Auckland and Acapulco earlier in the year prepared him well for Melbourne and his recent run to two finals suggests he is in the groove for Roland Garros and he will no doubt attract a fair few French Open tennis bets.

Ferrer has generally underperformed in Paris, two quarter final appearances being his best efforts in eight appearances. That is a poor record for such a good clay court scrambler and 2011 should be the year he puts it right, with another final showdown with Nadal a realistic aim.

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