Novak Djokovic handed favourable route to French Open final, though Russian duo loom large
Top seed Novak Djokovic has been handed a favourable draw in this year’s French Open in comparison with 12-time Roland Garros champion Rafael Nadal.
Novak Djokovic, who was defaulted from last month’s US Open in the fourth round, has been in fine form on his return to the clay courts, beating Diego Schwartzman to win his fifth Italian Open in the main precursor to the French Open.
The World No 1, who was beaten by US Open champion Dominic Thiem in the semi-finals of Roland Garros last year, will be looking to win his second French Open and faces a far easier path to the final than his rival Rafael Nadal, with the Serbian unlikely to face a single Grand Slam winner in his half of the draw.
In his opening round, Djokovic will face World No 80 Mikael Ymer before a potential clash with Lithuanian Ricardas Berankis in the second.
Awaiting the Serbian in the third round could be No 29 seed Hubert Hurkacz, who was beaten by Djokovic in straight sets in the first round of last year’s Roland Garros, before a possible matchup with Russian No 1 Karen Khachanov in the fourth.
World No 8 Matteo Berretini is a potential quarter final opponent for the Serbian, before the prospect of a semi-final with Daniil Medvedev, who is yet to make it past the first round at the French Open.
Should Djokovic make it to the final, he will likely face either 12-time champion Rafael Nadal or newly crowned US Open champion Dominic Thiem, who have both participated in the last two French open finals.
Djokovic’s (possible) route to a 2nd Roland Garros title:
Round 1: Mikael Ymer
Round 2: Ricardas Berankis
Round 3: Hubert Hurkacz
Round 4: Karen Khachanov
QF: Matteo Berretini
SF: Daniil Medvedev
Final: Rafael Nadal
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