French Open Draw

[1]Nadal v Isner
Giraldo v Andujar
Cuevas v Qualifier
Qualifier v [28]Davydenko
[24]Querrey v Kohlschreiber
Ljubicic v Devvarman
Tursunov v Malisse
Monaco v [16]Verdasco

[10]Fish v Mello
Gimeno-Traver v Haase
Chardy v Dimitrov
Russell v [18]Simon
[27]Baghdatis v Gil
Qualifier v Brown
Qualifier v Qualifier
Becker v [5]Soderling


[4]Murray v Qualifier
Qualifier v Qualifier
Clement v Volandri
Berrer v [26]Raonic
[21]Dolgopolov v Schuettler
Haider-Maurer v Sweeting
Kamke v Rochus
Reister v [15]Troicki

[11]Almagro v Qualifier
Berlocq v Tomic
Starace v Qualifier
Kunitsyn v [20]Mayer
[32]Anderson v Mahut
Chela v Smyczek
Roger-Vasselin v Qualifier
Qualifier v [8]Melzer


[7]Ferrer v Nieminen
Benneteau v Machado
Nishikori v Lu
Qualifier v [31]Stakhovsky
[22]Llodra v Qualifier
Petzschner v Zverev
Mannarino v Rufin
Qualifier v [9]Monfils

[14]Wawrinka v Qualifier
Qualifier v M.Gonzalez
Serra v Andreev
Hajek v [17]Tsonga
[29]Tipsarevic v Dabul
Dodig v Riba
Millot v Teixeira
Lopez v [3]Federer


[6]Berdych v Qualifier
Fognini v Istomin
Haas v Qualifier
Kendrick v [30]Garcia-Lopez
[19]Cilic v Ramirez-Hidalgo
Hewitt v Montanes
Brands v Kukushkin
Soeda v [12]Youzhny

[13]Gasquet v Stepanek
Qualifier v Granollers
Gabashvili v Seppi
Golubev v [23]Bellucci
[25]Del Potro v Karlovic
Gulbis v Kavcic
Paire v Hanescu
De Bakker v [2]Djokovic

The first thing in the draw to look at is where Roger is. He is in the third quarter, which happens to b a pretty good quarter to be in. He has a potentially tricky first round against Lopez though, having almost lost to Lopez in the third set tie break in Madrid. But this being Paris, which have slower conditions than Madrid and being a grand slam, I think Roger shouldn’t have too many problems here. But then again I said the same thing in Madrid. I don’t really want to look past the first round with Roger these days, but for the sake of the draw I will look a bit further. If he beats Lopez he faces the winner of two unknown players. Then he could face Tipsarevic, and to keep his quarter final streak at slams going he will have to probably beat Wawrinka or Tsonga. Wawrinka hasn’t done much in the clay season and we know Tsonga is very beatable on clay.

So I would be a little surprised if Roger doesn’t make quarter finals at least. Then for a place in the semi-finals he will meet Ferrer most probably. Usually Roger would be the clear favorite against Ferrer for me, but given his form during the clay court season I wouldn’t be so sure. But it’s nonetheless not a bad draw until the semi-finals. He could have gotten Gasquet, Berdych, or Soderling in his quarter, which would probably have been harder. Then Roger happens to be in Djokovic’s half of the draw. That is of course better than being in Nadal’s half. So if he makes it all the way to the semis he will at least have a better chance of winning than against Nadal. Djokovic has a tough draw himself and an upset is not impossible. So in the end I’m not looking past the first round for Roger, but sort of expect him to make quarter finals at least.

If we look at Nadal’s draw, it is probably harder than most of his draws. I like that he has Isner in the first round, even though Isner is pretty clueless on clay. I hope Isner can test him a bit. I am interested to see what Nadal’s form will be like after suffering a fourth consecutive final loss to Djokovic in Rome. After Madrid he looked vulnerable against Lorenzi, losing the first set. So I will once again be looking for signs of vulnerability from Nadal in the early rounds. He could face Davydenko in the third round, but with Nadal’s luck in draws I wouldn’t be surprised if Davydenko doesn’t make it. At least he could meet Soderling in the quarter finals, and Murray in the semi-finals. I think those two could test him. If he is vulnerable after the string of losses to Djokovic, one of those two may well step up and take advantage.

Murray has probably the easiest draw of the top four and you would expect him to make the semis. Is it just me or does he always get these easy draws? Djokovic on the other hand has the hardest draw of the top four I think. He has the dark horse Del Potro in the third round, and another dark horse Gasquet in the fourth round. Then he has Berdych and then Roger. I hope Djokovic doesnt get upset however, as I would like to see him beat Nadal in the final and devastate the Spaniard. In my last post I said winning the French Open will be a mere formality for Djokovic. Admittedly that was a bit premature, given that Nadal has won this thing five times in the last six years and the draw as well. But nonetheless Djokovic is the favorite for me. He is still unbeaten this year and will be extremely motivated to win his first slam outside of Australia.

He has so far dominated Nadal this season, but he needs to strike the knockout blow. Paris is really where it’s at. If Nadal beats Djokovic there he will mostly forget about the last four final losses to him. However, should Djokovic beat him there the ownage will be complete. Then you may well see Nadal going into a slump which would be just terrific. If not, Nadal will be the clay GOAT and on ten slams, one closer to Roger’s record of sixteen…


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  1. Perhaps Federer’s problems in Rome resulted from his having to switch tactics against Nadal in Madrid; he adjusted his usual baseline patterns and, given the very short turnover between Madrid and Rome, it was tricky for him mentally to return to his customary game.

    I think quarters is reasonably certain for Federer, semis slightly less certain, and anything beyond that would be gravy.

    If he gets that far in the tournament (big if), it is better that he meet Nadal in the final than in the semis. If he met Nadal in the semis, he would have to change his tactics, and assuming he won, would have to quickly readjust in the final. That would be mentally pretty difficult. It’s best if he only has to change his tactics once, in the final.

    One thing he has going for him, he no longer has to fret about the Career Slam. Before 2009 he went into the French Open thinking “if I don’t win it this time, maybe I’ll never win it.” Surely that wore on him mentally. That burden is now removed and he can just concentrate on the tennis.

    In Grand Slams he has time to play himself into form against qualifiers and get accustomed to the conditions, and the best of five format favors him; it’s harder for a lower-ranked player to get hot and take him out over five sets than it is over three sets.

    Go Roger!


  2. murray has got a crappy draw…probably he will make the semi’s wid not more thn 15 hrs of aggregate play oncourt…nadal has got a really tricky draw…i have a feelin davydenko will have his number again in the third round..atleast i hope he does….if del potro causes an upset by beatin djokovic n davydenko does the same to nadal, i think fed will have a second clear shot at roland garros in 2 weeks..


  3. Dear all,

    the draw does not look to bad for Roger. If he passes Lopez the semis might be possible.

    @Nadal: I saw him live in Rom against Cilic. “Seeing” is probably not right I needed field glasses to find him 10m behind the baseline. Anyways he is one of the unfairst players ever. Whenever Cilic was ready to serve Nadal turned around and took the towel. Especially in the second set when Cilic was playing better, cutting down the unforced errors. Cilic lost his concentration and got one stupid break and lost.
    I personally put my hope into Söderling. He had two great matches in his live 2009 1/4 finals Paris and 2010 1/4 finals Paris. So he should go for the hattrick.

    @Djokovic: Tough draw. In Rome against Söderling he played unbelievably in the second set, taking Söderlings brutal ground strokes on the rise…I also saw him on the training courts before the match. He was really funny and relaxed imitating Nadal, Federer, Sharapowa and so on. He even played some balls with a child from the audience….

    @Murray: I saw him playing against Mayer in Rom. He started slowly but in the end he played some fantastic clay court tennis. Remember he was close to beat Nadal in Monte and Djoko in Rom. So he is my dark horse. For some reason he found his forehand. Mentally he might be still unstable but in Paris he has no pressure…

    @Federer: I didn’t see him in Rom. Well he was the main reason for my trip to Rom. I’m still very angry that he lost to Gasquet …..I hope he will fight in Paris if he doesn’t play well. Then the semis are possible.



  4. Nadal is clearly the favourite. If you had to bet one one player making the finals it’d be him. I’d have said this before the draw because he owns everyone on clay not named Djokovic (right now). But in a hypothetical final between Nadal and Djokovic then I’d say it’s even odds. But Djokovic has to meet expectations, handle the pressure and get there. Remember the pressure that was on Federer the year he won and how it almost took that chance away.


  5. Simply put, Fed should not screw himself up on the first round and probably arrive at Qtrs quietly. Nadal’s and Murray’s draw looks pretty decent too till Qtrs. Can’t say much abt Djoker, 3rd against Delpo should be 4/5 setters with him winning Delpo exits early. Remember what happen at Madrid- bagel Cilic but withdrew next day against Nadal with hip injury what a letdown. I think we can safely say its going to be Nadal/Djoker final come June 5th.


  6. I am going to take Federer one match at a time. I am hoping he has good solid form and plays aggressively. The key to Roger’s game is his mental strength and maintaining a very high level of confidence. Let’s see how he performs against Lopez, Lopez is probably going to amp up his game thinking he can defeat Federer. Federer is going to have to play great and not waste any points on passive play. If, Federer does not make it to the semi-finals, I would like Murray to win. Looks like Andy is playing top-notch tennis right now and I am curious as how he will fare in the French Open. Simply tired of Novak and Nadal finals. Maybe Del Potro will finish Novak’s streak, one can only hope.


    Babel Reply:

    Yes it is probably better for everyone if there are 4-5 players winning Grand Slams (rather than just the Toxic Twins) like in the ’80s and ’90s. That would be great for Federer.


  7. I am afraid of the game against Lopez and if he survives it I’d rather take it a game a time. Nothing is a sure win with Roger these days which is quite disheartening. But win or lose, RF Forever! I dread the day of his retirement.


    IROCK Reply:

    No Need to worry so much roger steps it up inthe slams atleaast I hope


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