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Spanish Final at Roland Garros.


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Rafael Nadal seeks history against David Ferrer at French Open_65715361_piersnewbery.jpgBy Piers NewberyBBC Sport at Roland Garros
FRENCH OPEN FINAL
  • Venue: Roland Garros, Paris
  • Date: Sunday, 9 June
  • Time: 14:00 BST

Coverage: Live radio and text commentary on BBC Radio 5 live, BBC Sport website, mobiles and the BBC Sport app

Rafael Nadal will become the first man to win a Grand Slam singles title eight times if he beats David Ferrer in Sunday's French Open final.

The seven-time champion takes a 58-1 record at Roland Garros into the match against his fellow Spaniard.

"It will be a great day for the sport in Spain," said Nadal. "It's very difficult to have two Spanish players in the final, so it's fantastic news."

_68056865_davidferrertwo.jpg
Nadal v Ferrer: head-to-head

27

Age

31

19

Matches won

4

56

Career titles

20

11

Grand Slam titles

0

7

French Open titles

0

6

Titles this season

2

World number five Ferrer, 31, will be playing in his first Grand Slam final.

He faces a daunting task against the man who has dominated the French Open for almost a decade, and against whom he has just four wins in 23 meetings.

"I know he's the favourite, but I am going to be focused every point," said Ferrer. "I will try to do my best.

"I am not thinking about Rafael, whether he's better than me or not. I will try to fight a lot and to play a very good match."

Victory on Sunday would take Nadal past the likes of Pete Sampras and Roger Federer, both seven-time winners at Wimbledon, as the only eight-time champion of a Grand Slam in men's tennis.

The Majorcan, 27, returns to a major final for the first time since Paris last year.

He spent more than seven months out with a serious knee injury after Wimbledon, only returning in February. Since then he has won six of the eight tournaments in which he has competed.

"I don't feel like the favourite," said Nadal. "I feel that I am a finalist. I arrived to the final playing well. I improved a little bit in every match during the tournament.

"That's important, to arrive to the final with the right feelings, but he [Ferrer] didn't lose a set during the whole tournament, so he's a player that brings you to the limit.

Rafa rules at Roland Garros
  • Rafael Nadal has lost just once in his 59 matches at Roland Garros - a fourth-round loss to Sweden's Robin Soderling in 2009
  • Nadal has won his last 16 matches against Ferrer on clay
  • A win on Sunday will be Nadal's 59th at Roland Garros - more than any other player in French Open history

"He's a player that if you are not playing perfect, you will be in big, big trouble."

Nadal has known Ferrer for around 10 years and the pair are Davis Cup colleagues, as well as spending a lot of time in each other's company on tour, often passing the time playing video games.

"The person who is not respecting David as one of the greatest players of the world - and not for one year, for a long time - doesn't know anything about tennis," said Nadal.

The only time Ferrer has beaten Nadal on clay was their first match in 2004, when Nadal was 18, but the man from Valencia takes some encouragement from their last meeting in Rome last month.

"It is very difficult to beat Rafael on all the surfaces, but on a clay court it is more difficult," said Ferrer.

"I think I need to play my best tennis to beat him. In Rome I played a very good game; I played very aggressive all the match, and finally I lost with him because he was better."

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If Nadal wins I would expect him to be in the panel of the final Madrid 2020 presentation this Septmeber. After all in sports excellence Tokyo and Madrid do have the upper hand over Istanbul.

On the 7th of September, I hope He will be in semis at the US Open... so you could already look for someone-else for the Madrid's presentation !!!

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Rafael Nadal becomes the first man in tennis history to win a Grand Slam tournament, 8 times!

David Ferrer is the oldest man to play in a Grand Slam final since Andre Agassi at the US Open back in 2005!

Edited by Mainad
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yeay!! Viva Espana. Unfortunately, that may be the only major Spanish victory this year.

I dont think so... :)

Nadal is a great support of Madrid2020.

Nadal: “No city deserves the Games more than Madrid”

http://www.madrid2020.es/en/nadal-no-city-deserves-the-games-more-than-madrid/

In Spanish

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bTtW20B7pT0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mz-mn3kwMDs

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On the 7th of September, I hope He will be in semis at the US Open... so you could already look for someone-else for the Madrid's presentation !!!

And what about...

Miguel Indurain, He won five consecutive Tours de France from 1991 to 1995

Pau Gasol, Spanish professional basketball player for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association

Iker Casillas, Spanish football goalkeeper who plays for and captains both La Liga club Real Madrid and the Spanish national team

Fernando Alonso, Spanish Formula One racing driver and a two-time World Champion who is currently racing for Scuderia Ferrari

Arantxa Sánchez Vicario, Spanish former World No. 1 professional tennis player. She won four Grand Slam singles titles, six Grand Slam women's doubles titles, and four Grand Slam mixed doubles titles

David Cal, Spanish sprint canoer who has competed since 1999. Competing in three Summer Olympics, he has won five medals with a gold (C-1 1000 m: 2004 Summer Olympics) and four silvers (C-1 500 m: 2004, 2008; C-1 1000 m: 2008 and 2012; C-1 1000 m: 2012). With this latest victory in the London 2012 Olympic Games, he became the Spanish athlete with more Olympic medals of all time

Andres Iniesta

Sergio Ramos

David Ferrer

Jorge Lorenzo

2010 FIFA World Cup Final: Spain

2006 FIBA World Championship: Spain

Men's Handball World Championship Spain 2013

Spain has won the Davis Cup five times (2000, 2004, 2008, 2009 and 2011)

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