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With 10 French Open titles Rafael Nadal is the undisputed 'King of Clay'
Rafael Nadal, the undisputed 'King of Clay', has a very impressive record in the French Open with 79 wins and two losses in the total 81 matches that he has played along the red clay court at the Stade Roland Garros so far.

The French Open, also known as Roland Garros, the second Grand Slam tournaments of the year, is the only major tennis tournament played on outdoor red clay courts.

With a victory against the Swiss Stan Wawrinka in the final of the French Open 2017 in Paris –La Decima on Sunday, the Spaniard Rafael Nadal becomes the first man or woman in the Open era to have won the Grand Slam tournament 10 times. However, the all-time record is held by the Australian tennis legend Margaret Court, who won 11 Australian Open titles before the Open Era.

With this championship victory, Nadal moves above Pete Sampras on the list of all-time Grand Slam winners into second place behind Roger Federer. Nadal has won a total of 15 Grand Slam titles, including one Australian Open and two each Wimbledon and the US Open.

Since 1877, Nadal is the only tennis star who has won at least one Grand Slam title for 10 consecutive years. During the period from 2005 to 2014, he won nine French Open titles and in 2009 won the only Australian Open. Rafael Nadal – the king of the clay court – holds the record for the most consecutive wins in the Open Era, with five titles between 2010 and 2014.

In 2005, Nadal played his first clay court match at the French open against the German Lars Burgsmuller and won that match by 6-1, 7-6, 6-1. After 31 consecutive victories at the French Open since his debut and four titles, Nadal lost his first match in the French Open against Swedish player Robin Soderling in the fourth round of the tournament in 2009. Between these 31 matches, he lost only 7 sets including three each in 2005 & 2006 and one in 2007.

In the French Open 2015, Novak Djokovic became the first player to defeat the unstoppable Rafael Nadal after 39 consecutive victories at the clay court since 2009. In his 39 matches, the Spaniard lost only 10 sets. In the French Open 2016, Nadal gave a walk over to his fellow countryman Marcel Granollers in the third round because of a wrist injury.

In the French Open 2017, Nadal lost just 35 games and not a single set. That’s the second-fewest games lost at a Grand Slam best-of-five match. The Swedish tennis great Bjorn Borg holds the record from the 1978 French Open when he only lost 32 games en route to winning the title. This was the third occasion (2008, 2010 & 2017) that Nadal had won at Roland Garros without dropping a set.

At the French Open since his debut in 2005, the Spaniard has never lost against the contemporary greats Roger Federer and Andy Murray.

Rafael Nadal's 10 French Open victories:

2005: Nadal beats Mariano Puerta (Argentina) 6-7, 6-3, 6-1, 7-5

2006: Nadal beats Roger Federer (Switzerland) 1-6, 6-1, 6-4, 7-6

2007: Nadal beats Roger Federer (Switzerland) 6-3, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4

2008: Nadal beats Roger Federer (Switzerland) 6-1, 6-3, 6-0

2010: Nadal beats Robin Soderling (Sweden) 6-4, 6-2, 6-4

2011: Nadal beats Roger Federer (Switzerland) 7-5, 7-6, 5-7, 6-1

2012: Nadal beats Novak Djokovic (Serbia) 6-4, 6-3, 2-6, 7-5

2013: Nadal beats David Ferrer (Spain) 6-3, 6-2, 6-3

2014: Nadal beats Novak Djokovic (Serbia) 3-6, 7-5, 6-2, 6-4

2017: Nadal beats Stan Wawrinka (Switzerland) 6-2, 6-3, 6-1

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Dr.Cajetan Coelho
Congrats Rafa.
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