The French Open is all about Rafa!
For the first time since 2008, Nadal will not have to worry about Swiss player Roger Federer, who successfully defended his Australian Open title and is currently a bit of a journeyman. Nadal, who has won the French Open eight times in his career, is much better prepared than last year when he almost retired due to injury and illness and lost in the semi-finals to the eventual champion Novak Djokovic.
The Spaniard’s record against Federer in Grand Slams is only 6-4, but he has won two of their three matches at Roland Garros – including the French Open final in 2016 when he won his ninth title – and will need another performance like that to avoid a fourth consecutive loss in Roland Garros, where he lost to Djokovic and Milos Raonic in 2016 and 2017, respectively.
French start to third round …
There will be two French players in the third round of the French Open – Gael Monfils and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga – and Monfils was also victorious in that round last year. Neither will play on Monday, but it will be interesting to see who Thanasi Kokkinakis and Robin Haase face in the next round.
Sterling’s royal field
Besides Nadal, there are a few other big names not playing on Monday. No. 3 seed Djokovic was considered the favorite in Paris, but injuries and inconsistency have robbed him of top form, so a title could be out of reach. And No. 2 seed Alexander Zverev, the youngest player to enter the final four at Roland Garros since Bjorn Borg in 1976, will need to bounce back from early exits at the US Open and Wimbledon if he wants to add to his 11 titles on the ATP Tour. No. 4 seed Marin Cilic, who beat Federer at the Australian Open this year, will also be in action on Monday against Italian Simone Bolelli.
Spectators will be able to watch some of the day’s action on the Red Bull Tennis Academy 1 Player, a digital desktop service founded by a top tennis producer and student at the University of Pennsylvania. Watch all the match highlights on MyEurovision.tv, and follow along on Twitter and Instagram with #RolandGarros.
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