Rafael Nadal and Casper Ruud will go head-to-head on Sunday in the men’s singles final at Roland-Garros.
The Spaniard will be aiming to claim his 14th French Open, which would also be a record 22nd Grand Slam title.
In his path, however, is a rising star in Casper Ruud, who will make history as the first Norwegian to ever play in a singles final at a Grand Slam.
The Sporting News has all the details of the blockbuster final between Nadal and Ruud.
What time does the 2022 French Open men’s singles final start?
The French Open men’s final between Rafael Nadal and Casper Ruud will start at 3pm local time (2pm BST, 11pm AEST) on June 5 on Roland-Garros’ Court Philippe-Chatrier.
How to watch Rafael Nadal vs. Casper Ruud in the French Open final
- UK TV channel: Eurosport
- UK Live stream: Eurosport
You can subscribe or view Eurosport’s packages here.
- Australia TV channel: 9Gem
- Australia Live stream: Stan Sport
You can subscribe or view Stan Sport’s packages here.
|Match||Australia broadcast||UK broadcast||Local time start|
|Rafael Nadal vs. Casper Ruud||June 5, 11pm (AEST) – Stan Sport/9GEM||June 5, 2pm (BST) – Eurosport||June 5, 3pm (CEST)|
Rafael Nadal vs. Casper Ruud betting odds
Odds courtesy of Neds and SkyBet
Rafael Nadal’s recent form
Nadal was involved in a tussle with Alexander Zverev in their semi-final before a serious ankle injury ended the match prematurely in the second set. The Spaniard won the first set, but the match could have easily gone either way.
Prior to that, Nadal put on an impressive defensive performance against Novak Djokovic in the quarter-finals, forcing his way past the world No. 1 in an absorbing encounter.
Despite his prior success on clay and victory at the Australian Open earlier this year, Nadal entered Roland-Garros as the third favorite to win behind Djokovic and Carlos Alcaraz.
Whilst a foot injury prevented him from playing regularly in 2021, fitness has not been a concern at this year’s French Open for the 36-year-old.
Nadal won his first three matches of the tournament in straight sets, before prevailing in long matches against Felix Auger-Aliassime and Djokovic prior to his walkover semi-final victory.
Rafael Nadal’s French Open 2022 results
|First||Jordan Thompson (Australia)||6-2 6-2 6-2|
|Second||Corentin Moutet (France)||6-3 6-1 6-4|
|Third||Botic van de Zandschulp  (Netherlands)||6-3 6-2 6-4|
|Fourth||Felix Auger-Aliassime  (Canada)||3-6 6-3 6-2 3-6 6-3|
|QF||Novak Djokovic  (Serbia)||6-2 4-6 6-2 7-6(4)|
|SF||Alexander Zverev  (Germany)||7-6(8) 6-6 (walkover)|
Casper Ruud’s recent form
Ruud has enjoyed some of the best results of his career in the past couple of years, claiming five ATP titles in 2021.
So far this year, the 23-year-old has won tournaments in Geneva and Buenos Aires. On Sunday, he will make his first-ever appearance in a Grand Slam final.
He was tested from the get-go at this year’s French Open, pushed to five sets by Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the first round.
Ruud won in straight sets in the second round before prevailing in another five-setter against Lorenzo Sonego.
His latest game was a professional and mature semi-final victory over Croatian veteran Marin Čilić, handing him a ticket to the Roland-Garros final.
The young Norwegian is also peaking at the right time, having reached a career-high ranking of No. 7 in April this year (he is currently No. 8).
Casper Ruud’s French Open 2022 results
|First||Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (France)||6-7 (8) 7-6 (4) 6-2 7-6 (0)|
|Second||Emil Ruusuvuori (Finland)||6-3 6-4 6-2|
|Third||Lorenzo Sonego  (Italy)||6-2 6-7 (7) 1-6 6-4 6-3|
|Fourth||Hubert Hurkacz  (Poland)||6-2 6-3 3-6 6-3|
|QF||Holger Rune (Denmark)||6-1 4-6 7-6 (2) 6-3|
|SF||Marin Čilić  (Croatia)||3-6 6-4 6-2 6-2|
Rafael Nadal vs. Casper Ruud head-to-head results
Interestingly, Rafael Nadal and Casper Ruud are yet to play a competitive match against each other.
Despite making his professional debut in 2015, Ruud has never faced the man who he has described as being an ‘idol’ since childhood.
Rafael Nadal vs. Casper Ruud prediction
It would take a very brave person to tip against the undisputed ‘King of Clay’ in Rafael Nadal.
The Spaniard has only been pushed to five sets once this tournament (against young Canadian star Felix Auger-Aliassime) and should be fresh following a walkover victory against Alexander Zverev in the semi-finals.
He has won Roland-Garros a remarkable 13 times, so his experience and comfort on clay will undoubtedly shine through.
Casper Ruud won’t go down without a fight, though. The 23-year-old comes into the clash as an underdog but will continue to play his fearless brand of tennis.
He has worked his way out of a number of tiebreaks this tournament, so expect him to challenge Nadal and push him to four or more sets.
There is always the chance of an upset, but we will still likely see Nadal walk away with a historic 22nd Grand Slam title.
Prediction: Nadal in four sets.