Marin Cilic has revealed that he believes Rafael Nadal will be back to his best at the French Open this year, according to a report on the Express.
Nadal was dumped out of the Madrid Open by Dominic Thiem in the quarter-final in straight sets, ending his phenomenal start to the clay-court season.
The Spaniard had won 50 consecutive sets on clay before he met Thiem, but Cilic insists that the loss will only be a minor blip for the former world number one.
When speaking about Nadal’s chances at the French Open, Cilic said:
Rafa feels over there probably the best of all clay court conditions that there are. The balls are slightly different over there than what we play with in this clay season.
I think, overall, you know, playing best of five sets against him, also, there on Philippe Chatrier Court, I think the court is really big.
I think Rafa’s mentality, in general, on Grand Slams is maybe one percent or slightly better than everywhere else. I think that makes it just slightly more difficult to beat him there.
Nadal is looking to bounce back from his defeat in the Italian Open in Rome, which started on Sunday. The French Open is set to commence later this month, with Nadal one of the favourites to lift the trophy.