In case, in this distracted era, you only have time to read the first paragraph on your phone, here is the essential from Rafael Nadal: No French Open this year for the first time since 2004; no retirement just yet.
But there is, of course, much more to Nadal’s story, particularly at Roland Garros, the Grand Slam tournament he has dominated like no player has dominated any tennis major.
His 14 singles titles still look like a typo even for those like me who have watched him build that probably unbreakable record, red brick by red brick.
“When you play Roland Garros 14 times you tell yourself you had a good career,” the French veteran Nicolas Mahut said in an interview with L’Équipe. “When you win 14 matches there, that’s not too bad at all. When you get to the second week 14…