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After Serra, Monfils is Nadal’s next hurdle

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by Emmanuel VERSACE , Thibault LIEURADE

Latest update : 2008-10-30

After eliminating the Argentinian Juan Monaco (6-4, 6-4), Gael Monfils faces an unyielding Rafael Nadal, who defeated the Frenchman Florent Serra (left in photo). The young Parisian says challenging Nadal does not frighten him.

After qualifying to the first round of the Masters Series at Paris-Bercy, Florent Serra, 63d in world rankings, went up against the Goliath of the ATP tour, Rafael Nadal.  Despite his best effort, Serra, conceded victory to the Spaniard in two sets (6-2, 6-4).

In fact, the Frenchman has never beaten Nadal. Before Wednesday, he had only won only
five games total against him. On the previous day, Serra openly admitted that the upcoming bout against the No. 1 tennis player in the world would be “a completely different story” than his first-round victory over the Argentinean Guillermo Canas.

During his two previous matches against Nadal, Serra said he had felt like “a spectator,” but at Bercy the Frenchman was determined to play his strong suit, and even enjoy the confrontation. His forehand was not enough to make the difference,

Slaying the top-ranked tennis player is no easy undertaking, and Gael Monfils, seeded 16th, who is the next hurdle in the
merciless Nadal’s path, is well aware of the challenge.

But unlike Serra, the young Parisian has previously notched a victory against a world No. 1 -
Roger Federer, during the last French Open.

“I’m calm, whether I’m going up against Nadal, or against Federer,” announced Monfils, who is 14th in the ATP rankings.  Monfils is well aware of the need to replenish his arsenal:  “I know he likes my style of play.”

Date created : 2008-10-30