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The French Open is the second of the four Grand Slams and it’s widely regarded as the most physically strenuous tournament on the circuit. For fans of the long baseline exchanges, this event is unmissable with the slow, high bouncing clay and best of five set encounters resulting in matches literally lasting all day.
Held in a complex named after the legendary French fighter pilot Roland Garros, the French Open is currently located near the Porte d’Auteuil in Paris and has been ever since the event became open to all amateurs back in 1925.
Along with the other majors it has developed into one of the most prestigious sporting events in the world, broadcast to a global audience of millions. It saw the birth of a worldwide superstar back in 2005 when Rafa Nadal lifted the Coupe des Mousquetaires for the first time. Nadal is currently tied with Bjorn Borg on six titles and the current King of Clay will surely break Borg’s record before his career ends. Nadal’s lethal topspin forehand is more effective on the Court Philippe Chatrier than anywhere else. Chatrier is a little faster and higher bouncing than the rest of the French Open courts, enabling Nadal to pin his opponents far behind the baseline and run them ragged.
Big serves are made virtually redundant at the French Open and so many of the all-time greats have been frustrated here over the years. Pete Sampras, John McEnroe, Stefan Edberg and Boris Becker are just a few to have had their dreams of winning all four majors dashed here. Even Roger Federer has managed just the solitary title, finally completing the career Slam in 2009.
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