French Open restores faith in Rafa

After an underwhelming clay-court tune-up season, world No. 1 is feeling it again

Updated: May 31, 2014, 5:55 PM ET
By Greg Garber | ESPN.com

PARIS -- He is only three days shy of his 28th birthday, but when there is not a tennis ball directly in his path, Rafael Nadal moves like a man twice his age.

Remember how he used to charge from the changeover chair to the baseline at the start of matches? Now, he does a perfunctory semijog and is walking by the time he hits the tape.

This is the fallout of his exhausting, full-tilt physical game, and it will likely shave a few years off the backside of his career. But for ...

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