Why do you think Sampras struggled so much at the French Open? I know that Sampras's game style was not suited to the French Open clay but it was not as poorely suited as his results there suggest. Serve and Volley players could do well at the French Open and some (such as Panatta) even won the French Open. If you compare Sampras's achivements to other lesser Serve and Volley players he still performs worse at the French Open. Becker (whose game style was very similar to Sampras's) had several French Open semi-finals. Edberg reached the final of the French Open as did Stich. My personal opnion is that Sampras was afraid to make to many changes to his game to try and win the French Open. Sampras's early exists at the French Open undoubtably gave him more preperation time for Wimbledon. Remember the only year Sampras reached the semi-final of the French Open was the year he lost at Wimbledon in 1996. Sampras grew up witnessing what happened to Lendl where he did make sacrifices to try and win Wimledon but never quite made it. Lendl would probabely be viewed as a greater player if he had won 1 or more of the French Opens that he skipped and not made his 2 Wimbledon finals. Another point is that Sampras's achivements on clay outside the French Open (when Wimbledon was not around the corner) were sometimes better. Sampras won in Rome in 1994 but more significantly I feel he had a superb Davis Cup record on clay, such as in 1995 where he won all 3 of his matches in the Davis Cup final on clay against Russia without of which the USA would surely have lost the title.