The French Open 2008 came to a close with yet another resounding victory for Rafael Nadal as the Men’s Champion and the win of Ana Ivanovic on the Women’s side coinciding with her ascension to the #1 world ranking.
For Nadal (at right with his bionic muscles), on the men’s side, it was his fourth title in a row, with the last three coming at the cost of Roger Federer. The score in this year’s final was particularly punishing: 6-1,6-3,6-0. Nadal has now won 28 matches in a row (he has never lost at Roland Garros), tying Bjorn Borg’s record of four French titles in a row. And, along the way this year, Nadal didn’t drop a set, including in the more hotly contested match with Novak Djokovic 6-4,6-2,7-6(3). For Federer, it’s back to the drawing board. He may need a steroid-induced injury to Nadal to allow him to conquer the elusive French Open.
The men’s doubles were taken by the South American duo, Pablo Cuevas (Uruguay) and Luis Horna (Peru), pacing to a 6-2,6-3 score against Canadian Daniel Nestor and Serbian Nenad Zimonjic. The 2008 winners probably deserved their title, having knocked off the Byran brothers (USA) in the quarterfinals in a thrilling three set match 6-3,5-7,7-6(1).
On the women’s side, Ana Ivanovic took the singles honours and along with it the women’s world number 1 ranking, displacing Maria Sharapova in what seems to be a field dominated merely by Russian and Serbian players. Having lost in the final last year, this was a strong performance and just reward for Ivanovic, trouncing the surprise finalist Dinara Safina 6-4,6-3.
The women’s doubles were won by the 10th seeded Spanish duo, Medina Garrigues and Virginia Ruano Pascual, 2-6,7-5,6-4 come from behind victory over Dellacqua (Australia) and Schiavone (Italy).
All in all, an Open with little by way of scandals or major surprises. Nadal will surely break Borg’s record at the start of 2009 in terms of consecutive wins.