Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal is still the firm favourite to win the French Open despite his shock loss in the quarter-finals of the Rome Masters Getty

Rafael Nadal has brushed off his loss in the quarter-finals of the Rome Masters as just a blip and eased concerns ahead of his attempt to win his 10<sup>th French Open title at Roland Garros this year.

The Spaniard has has made a sensational start to the 2017 season having struggled with injuries in 2016. Nadal has made six finals in the nine tournaments he has played and won three titles on clay – Monte Carlo, Barcelona and Madrid – leading up to the French Open that starts on 28 May.

The 14-time men's singles Grand Slam champion was the favourite to take the title at the Rome Masters but suffered a shock defeat to Dominic Thiem in the last eight of the tournament. Nadal admitted after the loss that playing back-to-back matches and tournaments for over three months, it was one day when he was not perfect and did not have his best game.

Nadal has welcomed the rest days he has had after his exit from the tournament in Italy and confirmed that he is ready to 'play well' at Roland Garros. Despite the defeat against Thiem, the nine-time French Open champion remains the firm favourite to make it 10 titles in 13 appearances.

"I have been spending energy for many days, I went through tense moments and I played every match at a very high level. I have not been spending four days in a row at home for a long time, and so resting can be helpful," Nadal said, as quoted by Tennis World USA.

"No one won four titles before Roland Garros, or at least I never did it. Then things can go well or bad, but I think I am ready to play well at the Roland Garros. I know I have been working well for many months and now it comes the moment to do the last effort," the Spaniard added.