Will Djokovic catch up with Nadal at Roland Garros
At the end of the French Open, Medvedev has a chance to become the No. 1 racquet in the world again. Can he? The two-month grass-court marathon culminates in the Roland Garros, which traditionally takes place in May and June on the courts of Paris.
One last Slam for the Russians before the break
Next Sunday, May 22, starts the second in the season, and for the Russians and Belarusians the last Grand Slam tournament before a long break. The thing is that Wimbledon, which follows Roland Garros, has already announced that it will not allow our tennis players to participate even under the threat of depriving all the other players of the opportunity to add rating points. So for the Russians and Belarusians, and possibly for representatives of other countries, the tournament in Paris is the only chance to get 2,000 ranking points this summer. The next Points Slam, the Russians and Belarussians will not be held in New York until August 29 to September 11.
In the Shadow of the Bois de Boulogne
The French Open has been held since 1928 at the Roland Garros Stadium, named after the famous aviator. The stadium is located near the Bois de Boulogne on the outskirts of Paris. However, the tournament itself dates back to 1891, and in 1925 it received international status. Nowadays Roland Garros is considered to be the birthplace of grass courts, and it’s hard to imagine that before the tournament was played at Stade Français on grass.
The unbeaten Nadal
Traditionally, the winner of the men’s singles event is awarded the Moucheketeers Cup, named after the four French tennis heroes Henri Cochet, René Lacoste, Jean Borotre and Jacques Brunion, who “lit up” the tennis courts in the 1920s and 1930s. The Spaniard Rafael Nadal was the man who lifted the Cup most often – 13 times! The American Chris Evert, who won Roland Garros seven times, is the record-setter among women. German Steffi Graf and Frenchwoman Suzanne Lenglen, after whom the coveted women’s singles trophy is named, have each won six times. The reigning champions are Novak Djokovic and Barbora Krejcikova.
Cups in the hands of the Russians
“Roland Garros is one of the most successful for Russian tennis players. It was here that Evgeny Kafelnikov won the first single Slam for Russia in 1996. Anastasia Myskina (2004), Svetlana Kuznetsova (2009), and Maria Sharapova won there twice (2012, 2014).
Who is missing
Several famous tennis players who missed the tournament due to injuries will not play at the tournament – Matteo Berrettini, Roger Federer, Andy Murray, Kei Nishikori. Already after the start of qualification, Gaël Monfils, Roberto Bautista-Agut and Jan-Lennard Struff refused to participate, who will be replaced by the lacquered losers. But returned to action after a long break Grand Slam champions Stan Wawrinka and Dominic Thiem. As for women, the finalist 2019 Marketa Vondroushova, finalist 2020 Sofia Kenin and finalist 2021 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova will not play. Elina Svitolina went on maternity leave.
Will Djokovic retain his title as the world’s No. 1 racket?
Many remember how scandalously world number one Novak Djokovic was not allowed to the Australian Open. So now in Paris for the Serb it will be the starting “Slam” of the season, where he, by the way, will defend last year’s title. Recall that Nadal won a record 21st Slam in Melbourne. And Novak, who has 20 such victories, of course, wants to catch up with the King of the Grounds. It is curious that according to the results of the draw these prominent tennis players were placed in the same quarter of the net, and if both successfully pass the tournament distance they will meet in the 1/4 finals. In addition to the title, Djokovic will have to fight for the title of first racket. But this time it will be easier for Russian Daniil Medvedev and German Alexander Zverev.
Men’s grid layout
The top eight players are distributed in an interesting way. In the top half of the table together with Djokovic (No. 1 seed) and Nadal (5) are Alexander Zverev (3) and Carlos Alcaraz (6). Once again at the TBS there is a Russian quarterfinal between Andrey Rublev (7) and Daniil Medvedev (2). Kasper Ruud (8) and last year’s finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas (4) could meet in the third quarter. Curiously, Ruud will play in his opening match against the favorite of the French public, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, for whom this tournament will be his last.
The top eight seeds in the women’s draw are: Iga Swiontek (1) vs. Karolina Pliskova (8), Paula Badosa (3) vs. Arina Sobolenko (7), Ones Joubert (6) vs. Maria Saccari (4) and Anette Kontaveit (5) vs. Barbora Krejcikova (2). It is curious that four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka did not get into the seeding and will meet American Amanda Anisimova (27) in the first round. It should be noted that German Angelique Kerber (21) has a theoretical opportunity to collect a “Career Slam” if she wins the tournament. She has titles at the Australian Open and US Open – 2016, Wimbledon – 2018. Only Roland Garros is missing to the complete collection.
Start of Russians
There are 4 Russian men – Daniil Medvedev (2), Andrey Rublev (7), Karen Khachanov (21), Aslan Karatsev – and 7 women – Daria Kasatkina (20), Ludmila Samsonova (25), Veronica Kudermetova (29), Ekaterina Alexandrova (30), Varvara Gracheva, Anna Kalinskaya, Camilla Rakhimova – in the tournament. In the first round Medvedev will play against Argentina’s Facundo Bagnis. Rublev will play against Korea’s Kwon Sung Woo and Kalinskaya will take on Madison Keys (22). It should be noted that four Russian representatives – Pavel Kotov, Andrey Kuznetsov, Oksana Selekhmetieva and Anastasia Gasanova who incidentally has already lost her match – got to the final of qualification. Apart from the winners of qualification, each grid will also get three lackeys losers.
The total prize fund of the tournament has already surpassed covid times and this year amounted to a record €43.6 million – one million more than in 2019. The men’s and women’s singles champions will each receive € 2.2 million, while the finalists will receive € 1.1 million. Even the losers in the first round will not leave the tournament empty-handed – they will receive € 62,000 each.
Here are 10 reasons why you should watch Roland Garros 2022. The tournament will be held from May 22 to June 5. “The Championship will cover the course of the competition in detail. Watch our live text coverage online.