Roger Federer pulled out of French open due to Rafael Nadal, says Todd Woodbridge

By @saihoops on
Rod Laver, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal
Apr 2, 2017; Key Biscayne, FL, USA; Rafael Nadal of Spain (L) and Roger Federer of Switzerland (R) hold the finalist and Butch Buchholz trophy, respectively, after their match in the men's singles championship of the 2017 Miami Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center. Federer won 6-3, 6-4. USA TODAY Sports / Geoff Burke

Roger Federer decided to skip the forthcoming French Open (May 22 - June 11) due to the dominance of Rafael Nadal in 2017, according to Australian tennis great Todd Woodbridge. Federer has skipped the entirety of the clay-court season but not before making a remarkable start to the season, capturing Grand Slam No. 18 at the 2017 Australian Open before winning ATP 1000 masters events at Indian Wells and Key Biscayne.

Incidentally, Federer has defeated Nadal on three occasions this season. But odds makers and experts gave the Swiss Master very litle chance to overcome the threat posed by Nadal and Novak Djokovic at Roland Garross. Woodbridge reckons that Nadal's current 15-0 winning streak since the beginning of the clay-court season was enough reason for Federer to skip the second Grand Slam of the year. 

Roger Federer wise to focus on Wimbledon, feels Woodbridge

"I think it's very clear when you sit back and look at Federer's schedule for the year -- the French was never on it. And if all of a sudden he says, 'oh I might have a go', then he goes off his plan, and that could derail the rest of the year. I think he's watched Rafa and seen the amazing form Rafa's in, and realised he'd have no chance of beating him on a surface on which Rafa has always dominated him throughout the years," the Aussie told Tennis Mash, via Yahoo Sports

Federer is expected to rejoin the ATP tour closer to Wimbledon. The 35-year-old has employed a "pick-and-choose policy" this late into his career with hopes of staying on the circuit for many more years. Woodbrdige feels Federer was wise to target the Wimbledon, a tournament he has won a record seven times.

"Yet there is one pressure that Roger wasn't anticipating, and that's Rafa's form. Looking ahead to Wimbledon, the showdown will be the most anticipated story, with these two being the favourites and on course for a potential head-to-head match to rival this year's Australian Open final. Federer's goal since winning in Australia has to be winning another Wimbledon -- potentially a record eighth title. That's his motivation now," added Woodbridge, who reached the semi-final of the 1997 Wimbledon.

Rafael Nadal, after breezing to victories at Monte-Carlo, Barcelona and Madrid, is the prohibitive favourite to win the 2017 French Open and become the first player in history to win a Grand Slam on ten occasions. Analysts feel only Novak Djokovic poses a threat to the Spaniard.