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Federer, Nadal braced for French Open showdown (AFP)

Roger Federer shrugged off his Madrid Masters final defeat against Rafael Nadal and insisted it's all to play for at the French Open where he is the defending champion. "The claycourt season will not be judged here, but in Paris," said the world number one after his 6-2, 7-6 (7/5) loss to his great Spanish rival in Sunday's final. "We will see what happens in three weeks. I feel I'm ready for Paris. I felt a major improvement in my game compared to last week when I came here from Estoril."

Federer is also looking at the bigger picture. "After seven months on hard courts it's tough to dominate. In my clay losses (Ernests Gulbis in the Rome second round and Alberto Montanes in the Estoril semi-finals) I still played well," he said. "They were good for me, but I gained lots of confidence this week. Considering where I was a week ago, I've made lots of progress.

2010 French Open Preview - Roger Federer the second favorite (Crunch Sports)

The 2010 French Open is six days away as it starts on May 23rd and continues until June 6th. It takes place from Paris, France at the Roland Garros tennis center and it is the second Grand Slam of tennis in the calendar year, the only one that is played on clay. As a clay court event many players who are adept at hard court tennis or grass are not considered to be serious factors to win the French Open.

2nd favorite: Roger Federer of Switzerland

Roger Federer was drifting in the futures market for the 2010 French Open up until his finals appearance in Madrid (l. to Nadal). Recent losses on clay to Ernests Gulbis and Albert Montanes had made some skeptical of Federer's form. However he appears to be poised to make a deep run at Roland Garros although it is difficult to see him defeating Nadal should they meet.

Federer is the top ranked player on tour although there are French Open scenarios that would see Nadal retake top spot. As the defending champion from last year Federer must be considered a favorite and regardless of short term form he appears to elevate his tennis in Grand Slams. Roger Federer has made 4 French Open finals but only won one of them (2009 d. Soderling).

Federer is the current holder of 3 Slams however and can never be counted out as no one has taken down more Grand Slams, careerwise, than Fed.

Federer dominates ATP rankings (The Hindu)

Rafael Nadal’s victory over Roger Federer in Sunday’s Madrid Masters 1000 final sees the Spaniard move up one place to second in the latest men’s tennis rankings issued on Monday by the ATP. The Swiss star Federer continues to lead with 10,030 points followed by Nadal on 6,880. Serbia’s Novak Djokovic drops to third in an otherwise unchanged top 10.

Federer, Nadal differ on French Open importance (Reuters Canada)

Roger Federer shrugged off his Madrid Open final defeat by Rafa Nadal as irrelevant, saying his claycourt season would be defined by his run at the French Open. Unsurprisingly, his victorious rival begged to differ. "Rafa's and my clay court seasons are decided at the French Open, and not before," the 28-year-old Federer said. "It's unfortunately -- or fortunately -- like that. If we win all the tournaments like Rafa now and then go out in the first round of the French, everything will be questioned."

Federer displayed his customary sang froid after losing Sunday's final, saying he was pleased with his overall form ahead of the French Open, which begins next Sunday. "I think under the circumstances I played well today but he comes up with some incredible stuff," the 16-times grand slam winner said. "He's Rafa Nadal after all and he's playing with huge confidence and an incredible game from the baseline and it's never easy to penetrate through that."

Date: 17.05.2010, Source: RF Official


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