Rafael Nadal: Ranking His Biggest Threats at Roland Garros

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Rafael Nadal: Ranking His Biggest Threats at Roland Garros
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Rafael Nadal, whether ranked number two or number three in the world, will head into the French Open finals as one of the favorites for the title, if not the favorite for the title.

Looking retrospectively at how the clay court season has evolved so far this season, the results haven't actually being that surprising. Nadal won the Monte Carlo Masters and Barcelona as is expected given his history in those two places, Federer won the traditionally hard-court leaning Madrid Masters and all three are looking comfortable enough in Rome.

Having won the title at Estoril, Juan Martin Del Potro is sure to make a nuisance of himself, while Tomas Berdych's contentment with playing in courts that set the ball up for big hitters like himself is shining through. David Ferrer, industrious as ever, is there or thereabouts and everything more or less seems like it usually does.

Speaking prospectively about a tournament is about as unscientific as one can get in tennis analysis. However, the judgments made here are made on the best available evidence.

Who are the biggest threats to Nadal on clay? Simple: big servers, flat-hitters, confident players and Nakovic (Nadal himself, with a touch of Djokovic left to simmer).

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