In my last post, I pretty overwhelmingly said Nadal is a clear favorite going in to Roland Garros. This conclusion had hindsight and foresight reinforcements.
Hindsight involves the guy’s history at this major, on this surface in general. I have committed to developing this brilliant thesis that I call Nadalism. This is his cup-of-tea, his préféré, we’ll call it.
Hindsight involves, as well, the play in Rome. I wrote an entire post about this. One can not deny the meaning or significance of that final, the bagel, etc. Sorry.
I love Novak’s focus, his highest form, his fortitude. The man is capable of some remarkable tennis and all we have to think about is the first 3/4 of this current, potential Novak Slam that strolls into Paris this week for the upcoming tournament called the French Open. He rises to the occasion. His fangirls ride this species of statistical argument deep into the sunset of their intelligence, if you catch my drift. We know of what they speak, but they talk too much. Still, Novak plays well when he’s supposed to play well.
None the less, Rome is part of our hindsight.
Ah, the foresight.
This match, in the end, and I know this sounds like I’m drinking the kook-aide — but this is the state-of-the-men’s-game going into Roland Garros: Rafa is the clear favorite.
And, again, Rome tells us why:
Rafa is back in-form, confident AND desperate (very bad mix of emotions for his opponents)
What about Novak’s draw and form? Is he Madrid or Rome?
What about the draw? These players are the favorites, we have to assume, but Rafa will probably do much better with his draw (just a premonition). The draw will be critical. Rafa will get a favorable draw, almost certainly. Who gets Thiem in the SF? Where do Tsitsipas and Del Potro end-up? How is Federer going to play? What about Wawrinka or a few of the younger gents who sense the change in the game at the top?
Where will Thiem, Tsitsipas and Del Potro land, for starters? What about Federer?
Here’s how this plays-out, most likely (and I said flat-out that Nadal would “get a favorable draw, almost certainly”). This is all very very predictable. This is his tournament.
What did I say.
Nadal has NO ONE in his quarter. He gets Medvedev or Nishikori in a QF, maybe. There’s a host of other B-level talent in there that could derange that imbalance even more perversely.
His semi-final opponent will be the survivor of Federer/Schwartzman/Cecchinato/Cilic/Wawrinka/Tsitsipas et al.
Give me one other name from that Nadal quarter that I should have included. This is not bias; this is comedy, not from my imagination, but from this predictable power play that underscores Nadalism. Brings back memories of that infamous 2017 USO draw. We had fun with his 2019 AO draw, as well.
Up top, Djokovic has a pretty shallow quarter, the likes of Coric, Struff (has had a decent clay campaign), Zverev and Kyrgios. Novak should be fine. PS – he has Fognini, as well. Sorry about that oversight. 😉
His semi-final opponent is likely Thiem or Del Potro though Monfils and FAA are in there, as well. So, Novak gets Thiem.
Novak could potentially have more difficulty, which was part of the foresight I used to reach my conclusion in my previous post.
Maybe this is all fine. Sets-up the likelihood of a Djokovic v Nadal final. Probably wouldn’t want it any other way. But, Geezus.
Give us a break.