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Rafael Nadal: Anatomy of a champion

By Paul Gittings, CNN
  • Rafael Nadal won his sixth French Open title at Roland Garros on Sunday
  • Many experts consider him the best clay-court player of all time
  • The Spaniard won three grand slams in 2010 to cement No. 1 spot in the world

(CNN) -- Rafael Nadal's domination of the clay courts rose to a new high on Sunday after his victory against Roger Federer in the French Open final gave him a record-equaling sixth Roland Garros crown.

This despite a stuttering start to the tournament that saw the Spaniard taken to five sets for the first time in Paris against American John Isner.

But Nadal battled through and regained his form as the tournament continued in an awesome demonstration of why he so rarely loses on clay. He has only suffered one defeat at Roland Garros, to Sweden's Robin Soderling in 2009.

Many consider him to be the greatest clay-court player of all time with a game uniquely suited to the unforgiving surface. He is now one French Open title short of putting this claim beyond doubt.

CNN asked a panel of experts to analyze every aspect of Nadal's make-up -- from his stroke-making to his physical ability and his mental approach -- to give a unique insight into what makes Nadal such a great champion.