French Open Legend Rafael Nadal Plays Possible Final Match at Roland Garros

On Monday, 14-time French Open champion Rafael Nadal was a straight sets loser in the first round at Roland Garros. Afterward, the soon-to-be 38-year-old legend said that it is likely his final match at the event and venue that he has dominated. His 14 career wins is unlikely to ever be challenged, with the next closest in the open era being the six wins by Björn Borg. The most women’s singles titles at the French Open are the seven won by Chris Evert.

Nadal lost to Alexander Zverev, 6-4, 7-6(7-5), 6-3, a player he beat at the French Open in 2022 when he was on the way to his final title. His first title at Roland Garros was won in 2005.

Bonjour a tous. I’d like to thank you all, it’s an incredible opportunity,” said Nadal after the match. “It’s difficult for me to talk. I don’t know if it’s going to be the last time in front of all of you. Honestly, I’m not sure.

“The amount of feelings I had on this amazing court throughout my career, with all the success I had winning here, I could never have dreamed it.”

Nadal is a two-time winner of the Australian Open. He’s won Wimbledon twice and the U.S. Open four times, making him one of just five men to win the double career grand slam. But his real specialty was on the clay courts at the French Open, where he twice won the tournament four years in a row, and was the victor five straight times from 2010 to 2014.

Nadal may be done at the French Open, but he hopes to be back at Roland Garros for the Summer Olympics in July.

“First of all, thank you, Rafa, from all of the tennis world,” Zverev said after the match. “It’s such a great honor. I’ve watched Rafa play all my childhood and was lucky enough to play him when I turned professional. Today is not my moment, it’s Rafa’s moment. Thank you.”

The next grand slam tournament on the schedule is Wimbledon, and Nadal has registered for the event. But he is undecided about his actual participation, with the Olympics a month later as his main priority.

French Open Championship Odds

Men’s Draw

On the men’s side of the French Open, the favorite to win the tournament is Carlos Alcaraz, paying +220. A countryman to Nadal, he was a semifinalist last year at Roland Garros, and he is the current defending champion at Wimbledon.

Novak Djokovic is a three-time winner of the French Open, including last year, and he is paying +425. In January, Jannick Sinner became the first Italian to win the Australian Open, and he is paying +425 to win the French Open. Zverev is at +500. Stefanos Tsitsipas was a finalist here in 2021, and he’s paying +1000.

The American on the men’s side with the shortest odds is Taylor Fritz, paying +8000. Fritz has made it to the third round at Roland Garros twice, and he was a quarterfinalist at the Australian Open in January.

Women’s Draw

The overwhelming favorite on the women’s side of the French Open draw is Iga Świątek. The three-time winner at Roland Garros is paying -175. Aryna Sabalenka was a semifinalist here in 2023, and she’s on the betting board at +600. Russian Elena Rybakina was the Wimbledon champion in 2022, and she’s paying +800 at the French Open. American Coco Gauff is just 20-years-old. The defending champion at the U.S. Open, she is paying +1200 to win the French Open.

The women’s singles championship will be played on Saturday, June 8. The men’s singles championship will be played the following day on June 9.

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