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French Open 2023 men's preview: Rafael Nadal looms large despite absence

Rafael Nadal's absence will loom large at the 2023 French Open. He's played in every one since 2005, winning 14(!!) along the way. Will it even feel like Roland Garros without him?

It will, but it will be hard to deny that something is missing. Nadal is beloved the world over not just because of his tennis prowess, but because he's always been grateful, generous, and kind with his fans. The crowds at Roland Garros love him almost more than they love French players.

Nadal's absence is painful for another reason, too. It's a look at the future, when Nadal will be done playing for good.