John McEnroe names the six players that could beat Rafael Nadal at the French Open

2019 French Open - Day Four

Rafael Nadal has continued to prove why he is ranked world number two after he eased into the third round of the French Open.

The Spaniard dispatched his second German named Yannick in as many rounds to progress in a tournament he has won more times than anybody else (11).

Yannick Hanfmann was his first victim before Yannick Maden saw the same fate of a straight sets defeat to Nadal, who looks rather unstoppable at this point.

Nadal has often proved unrelenting in this tournament on his preferred surface - in which people claim he is the best ever - and will take some stopping this time around.

The draw has been kind to the 32-year-old for sure after having endured just two hours and nine minutes of playtime in his demolition of Maden.

In light of his performances, John McEnroe is of the opinion that the 17-time major winner is virtually unstoppable on this surface and can only really be challenged by six players in the tournament.

If this is true, then Nadal’s route to the final should be quite easy as half of them appear on the other side of the draw. Novak Djokovic, Dominic Thiem and Fabio Fognini would all have to wait until the final if they were to meet Nadal in the competition.

Of the other three, only one can meet him and not until the semi-finals. Stefanos Tsitsipas, Stan Wawrinka and Roger Federer are the three names McEnroe listed as the players who may just stand a chance in stopping Nadal from reaching his third consecutive French Open final.

“He looks unbeatable, virtually, but he is about to turn 33,” McEnroe told Eurosport during Nadal’s 6-1, 6-2, 6-4 win.


When asked who may be able to stop this “unbeatable” force, McEnroe said: “Djokovic, Thiem, Fognini – but they’re in the other side of the draw, Federer on clay? Obviously, he respects him. Wawrinka? If he could get his act together, and he seems like he’s heading in the right direction. 

“Tsitsipas has made a lot of progress, I guess you could put him in the mix. That would be about it.

“I think Djokovic is the only guy who makes him shudder a bit. Still, you’ve got to be 60-40 for Nadal.”

Djokovic is the only name in the competition who is rated higher than Nadal and is ranked the world’s best, but the Serbian has won just one French Open in his career and does not perform like Nadal on clay.

Nadal will face Belgium international David Goffin who enters the tie after having also won two straight set victories. He is currently ranked 30th in the world.

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