Simon Reed

Federer form not a concern

Simon Reed

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I think increasingly we've seen that Roger Federer targets the Grand Slams with almost total exclusion to anything else.

Obviously I'm not saying he doesn't care about the other tournaments he plays, but he definitely targets success at the Grand Slams and I think being beaten elsewhere is not particularly important to him.

He is not as good as he was two years ago, I think even he would admit that, and he's not that bothered as long as he feels he's playing well.

Is he playing well right now? Probably not. Is he worried about the French Open? Probably not.

I'm sure he'd like to have a good run on clay and also secure a good win against one of the top players. But I don't see his topsy-turvy form on clay so far this season as a major blip.

He has been the second best clay court player in the world for the past six years and he will again be the second favourite at Roland Garros behind Rafael Nadal.

Assuming he is 100 per cent fit and healthy I can't see anyone beating Nadal at the French Open. I think it's a forgone conclusion that he will win.

Having said that, I thought that last year too!

There will be at least one tough match for Nadal during his run at Roland Garros, and the question is are his knees strong enough to deal not only with that match but with two weeks of play?

Only he and his camp know how good his knees are. And maybe even they don't really know how he'll hold up if he gets all the way to the final and then has to play Federer.

Is he going to be strong enough in my opinion? I suspect yes.

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