Internazionali BNL d'Italia - Prelude to the French Open?
The Internazionali BNL d'Italia tennis tournament is over

On the men's side, Rafael Nadal beat Roger Federer, while on the women's side Serena Williams beat Victoria Azarenka.

Nadal's victory moves him up in the rankings, making him the fourth seed at the upcoming Roland Garros French Open. Nadal, also known as the "King of Clay," lost his spot in the dominating top four after suffering a knee injury and spending months on the sidelines. He replaces David Ferrer, who now moves to No. 5.

Rafa is on a winning streak, including Barcelona, Madrid and now Rome.

What does this mean for the French Open? Some people were worried that if Nadal started the tournament outside of the top four it might affect his confidence and performance. Obviously, this will no longer be the case. Nadal is definitely the player to watch -- and the player to beat -- next week.

In men's doubles, the unstoppable Bryan Brothers won their 24th Masters 1000 trophy and sixth title of this year.

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Serena Williams must be feeling pretty good right about now. She extended her win streak to 24 matches -- a career best. The last time Serena won Rome was in 2002, after that win she won her one and only French Open title. Serena must be hoping that history will repeat itself as she prepares for Roland Garros next week.

Victoria Azarenka lost this match but she definitely isn't falling short: With this runner-up showing, she becomes the 10th WTA player to surpass the $20 million prize money mark. At 23 years old, she is the youngest woman player to enter the $20 million club.

Women tennis players who have won $20+ million in prize money:

  1. Serena Williams (#1 with a whopping $44, 549, 390 in prize money)

  2. Venus Williams

  3. Maria Sharapova

  4. Kim Clijsters

  5. Lindsay Davenport

  6. Steffi Graf

  7. Martina Navratilova

  8. Justine Henin

  9. Martina Hingis

  10. Victoria Azarenka

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