The No.12 seed may have taken down an undercooked Nadal in Rome, but the 12-time champion is another beast on his cherished terre battue of Court Philippe-Chatrier.
The magnitude of the task facing Schwartzman was daunting for any player. Nadal led their head-to-head 9-1, had bludgeoned the draw without dropping a set as he closed on a record-tying 20th major.
Ultimately Schwartzman gave it his all, stretching every sinew in a 6-3, 6-3, 7-6(0) defeat to the ‘King of Clay’ over three hours of play.
The first two games painted the picture. The Spaniard saved two break points in a gruelling 14-minute opener, then instantly broke Schwartzman from 0-30 down.
“The beginning in every single match I play against Rafa, it's always, like, 25 minutes and it's 1-all,” said Schwartzman with a chuckle. “I expect that before the match, so was not a surprise. After that, you maybe have the ideas, ‘OK, we are going to play many hours today'. I think the difference today was few balls difference, few balls that I did really well and few was out like really close from the lines.”