Roland Garros; The Draw

The draw for this years French Open has been made. We now know the projected paths for the top players where so much is expected of them and the potential early obstacles they could face.

Novak Djokovic

R1 – Hubert Hurkacz
R2 – Sam Querrey
R3 – Gilles Simon / Jaume Munar
R4 – Borna Coric / Denis Shapovalov
QF – Fabio Fognini / Alex Zverev
SF – Dominic Thiem
F – Roger Federer / Stefanos Tsitsipas / Rafael Nadal

On paper, Novak has the toughest draw in my opinion. Hubert has been one of the form players of late and Sam Querrey is known for an odd upset and Munar could cause a problem. The good news for Novak is that he is on the opposite side to Tsitsipas, Rafa and Federer.

Dominic Thiem

R1 – Tommy Paul
R2 – Alexander Bublik
R3 – Kyle Edmund
R4 – Gael Monfils
QF – Juan Martin Del Potro / Karen Khachanov
SF – Novak Djokovic
F – Stefanos Tsitsipas / Rafael Nadal / Roger Federer

Early rounds look ok for Dominic Thiem. I only see Bublik as a potential problem as we know he can mix it up. Likewise with Gael Monfils which will be an interesting battle if it comes to it but if he is to win his first major he might have to see off both Novak and Rafa.

Stefanos Tsitsipas

R1 – Maximilian Marterer
R2 – Hugo Dellen
R3 – Frances Tiafoe
R4 – Stan Wawrinka / Marin Cilic
QF – Roger Federer
SF – Rafael Nadal
F – Novak Djokovic / Dominic Thiem

On paper it is a pretty straight forward early couple of rounds. R3 potentially against Tiafoe could be tricky but you never know what he will bring. R4 is full of options. I’ve put Wawrinka and Cilic as potential opponents but you could also have in-form Garrin and the out of form Dimitrov there to.

If he’s going to do it, imagine beating Federer, Nadal and Djokovic…

Roger Federer

R1 – Lorenzo Sonego
R2 – Malek Jaziri
R3 – Matteo Berrettini
R4 – Marco Cecchinato / Diego Schwartman
QF – Stefanos Tsitsipas
SF – Rafael Nadal
F – Novak Djokovic / Dominic Thiem

I don’t expect Roger to win here but I expect a good run. There are some tricky and in-form opponents who could stand in his way a little but over 5 sets? You’d expect him to get through. I just don’t think against Tsitsipas over five sets he will see him off but we will have to wait and see!

Rafael Nadal

R1 – Qualifier
R2 – Qualifier
R3 – David Goffin
R4 – Guido Pella
QF – Kei Nishikori / Daniil Medvedev
SF – Roger Federer / Stefanos Tsitsipas
F – Novak Djokovic / Dominic Thiem

In all honesty I see it being pretty plain sailing for Rafa. His run to the semi-finals should not be a problem at all, he has too much to blow Kei and Daniil potentially off the court and for me his main issue getting to the final will come from Tsitsipas.


Naomi Osaka 

R1 – Anna Karolina Schmiedlova
R2 – Jelena Ostapenko / Victoria Azarenka
R3 – Maria Sakkari
R4 – Madison Keys
QF – Serena Williams
SF – Simona Halep / Petra Kvitova
F – Kiki Bertens / Karolina Pliskova

Oh… this draw is going to be rough. Schmiedlova is a tough opponent but then potentially to have Vika and the inform Sakkari followed by Keys even before the business end of the tournament is rough. I will be surprised if Naomi gets to the second week.

Simona Halep

R1 – Alja Tomljanovic
R2 – Magda Linette
R3 – Daria Gavrilova / Lesia Tsurenko
R4 – Daria Kasatkina / Qiang Wang
QF – Petra Kvitova
SF – Naomi Osaka
F – Kiki Bertens / Karolina Pliskova

It is a pretty smooth ride to the quarter finals I’d imagine. The main obstacle for me would be Alja in round one. On her day she can really step it up. Winning Roland Garros first time around was tough enough but potential route to defending her title will be tough. She will be thankful Kiki and Karolina are on the opposite side.

Serena Williams

R1 – Vitalia Diatchenko
R2 – Dalia Jakupovic
R3 – Bianca Andreescu / Sofia Kenin
R4 – Ash Barty / Hsieh Su-Wei
QF – Naomi Osaka
SF – Simona Halep / Petra Kvitova
F – Kiki Bertens / Karolina Pliskova

I wouldn’t rule anything out here. I’d be surprised if Bianca get’s to R3 after missing the entire clay court season with this shoulder injury I will be surprised and I expect Sofia Kenin to provide a tough challenge. If number 24 is going to happen she has all the major obstacles in her half of the draw.

Petra Kvitova

R1 – Sorana Cirstea
R2 – Vera Zvonerava
R3 – Mihaela Buzarnescu / Barbora Strycova
R4 – Anett Kontaveit / Aryna Sabalenka
QF – Simona Halep
SF – Naomi Osaka
F – Kiki Bertens / Karolina Pliskova

I think Petra has one of the more problematic draws. Depending on what form she is matches against Mihaela or Barboa in R3 or even Anett in R4 could be a very tricky affair. Many are saying she is a favourite but I just don’t feel it!

Sloane Stephens

R1 – Misaki Doi
R2 – Alison Van Utyvanck
R3 – Aliaksandra Sasonovich
R4 – Garbine Muguruza / Venus Williams / Elina Svitolina
QF – Kiki Bertens
SF – Karolina Pliskova
F – Simona Halep / Naomi Osaka

Sloane can cause some trouble here but wow if she is going to go far in this tournament she will probably have some extremely trick ties to come through if the draw pans out as projected.

Kiki Bertens

R1 – Pauline Parmentier
R2 – Alize Cornet
R3 – Johanna Konta
R4 – Belinda Bencic / Donna Vekic
QF – Sloane Stephens / Venus Williams / Elina Svitolina
SF – Karolina Pliskova
F – Simona Halep / Naomi Osaka

Kiki Bertens has it tough. All eyes will be on her and she is guaranteed a start against Pauline in R1 and maybe another Frenchwoman in Alize Cornet in R2 so will be up against the crowd. Johanna Konta caused a big upset in Rome against the in-form Madrid champions and after then it is a potentially tough draw. Maybe too tough?

Karolina Pliskova

R1 – Madison Brengle
R2 – Svetlana Kuznetsova
R3 – Kiki Mladenovic / Petra Martic
R4 – Julia Georges / Caroline Wozniacki
QF – Angie Kerber
SF – Sloane Stephens / Kiki Bertens / Elina Svitolina
F – Simona Halep / Naomi Osaka

A tough draw. Potentially some tricky matches against former winner Kuznetsova followed by in-form Martic or in-from French star Mladenovic and could play good friend and doubles partner at times Julia Georges. A tough draw for Karolina.


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