Roland Garros

seven players to watch


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The 2022 edition of Roland-Garros will run from May 22 to June 5. Between the resisting old guards and the promising youth, France 24 presents seven names you should follow for the tournament.

The eternal Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal are still out there, but the new generation has long teeth for this Roland-Garros, which opened Sunday, May 22. In women, Iga Swiatek looks unbeatable.

Raphael Nadal

Spaniard Rafael Nadal in Rome on 16 May 2021. ©Filippo Monteforte, AFP

When compiling a list of sensations to watch for Roland-Garros, the Spaniard’s name always comes first on paper. And for good reason: Mallorcan has won 13 editions of the French Open – a record – and even has a statue at the entrance to the site. This record, combined with 21 Grand Slam titles, makes him a natural favorite.

However, Rafael Nadal does not arrive at Porte d’Auteuil with certainty. His latest tournament, the Masters 1000 in Rome, ended with gruesome footage: a grimacing titan, the victim of an unbearable awakening from the pain associated with a chronic and incurable injury to his left foot (Muller-Weiss syndrome). First training sessions in Paris show pain relief. enough to lift 14and Musketeers Cup?

Iga Swiatek

Iga Swiatek during his victory in Rome in May 2022.
Iga Swiatek during his victory in Rome in May 2022. © Andreas Solaro, AFP

No player has won more than one edition of Roland-Garros since Serena Williams in 2015. However, it’s hard to see how the championship in sporty air levitation since the beginning of the year can escape the Iga Swiatek this year. The confident, extremely aggressive Polish player has lost just one set (in nine games) since the start of the clay court season. In addition, 28 games in a row unbeaten.

At almost 21 (May 31), Iga Swiatek confirms that mustard is her kingdom. Her first career title – at Roland-Garros, quite simply – leaves you guessing. Since then, he has amassed half of his titles on clay.

Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic celebrates Rafael Nadal's semi-final win in 2021.
Novak Djokovic celebrates Rafael Nadal’s semi-final win in 2021. © Gonzalo Fuentes, Reuters

After a fishtail to 2021 with an early double qualifier at the Olympic Games and a home stretch of the Grand Slam calendar at the US Open, the first quarter of 2022 came to a standstill due to a lack of vaccines against Covid. 19, we thought Novak Djokovic had finished.

But within a month the Serbian is back in orbit on clay and presenting itself as the main favorite at Roland-Garros, where it was the reigning champion. Doubled by Rafael Nadal in the Grand Slam trophy record race at the Australian Open (20 vs. 21), Djokovic wants to return the favor to the Spaniard on his favorite court. Toward a remake of last year’s dantesk semi-final?

ounce Jabeur

Ons Jabeur during the Indian Wells tournament in California on October 9, 2021.
Ons Jabeur during the Indian Wells tournament in California on October 9, 2021. © Tim Nwachukwu via AFP Getty Images

What if it was him? The 27-year-old Tunisian’s rise never ends. Ons Jabeur, the first player in the Arab world to win the WTA 1000 in Madrid, the most prestigious tournament category after the Grand Slams, wore the jersey of his life. Before Roland-Garros, he was still in the final of the Rome tournament.

The world number 6 remains to be confirmed at the Grand Slam. It has not made it beyond the quarterfinals so far (Australian Open 2020 and Wimbledon 2021). At Roland-Garros, Ons Jabeur has the opportunity to delve a little further into the history of Arabian tennis.

carlos alcaraz

Carlos Alcaraz in the final game against Casper Ruud on April 3, 2022, in Miami.
Carlos Alcaraz in the final game against Casper Ruud on April 3, 2022, in Miami. Geoff Burke, USA Today Sports

“I’m not afraid to say that I’m ready to win a Grand Slam (tournament).

>> Also to read: “Who is Carlos Alcaraz, the new prodigy of Spanish tennis?”

It must be said that “Carlitos” has had a chilling spring: he won his first two Masters 1000 trophies in early April in Miami and early May in Madrid, and meanwhile was crowned in Barcelona. He made an impression by knocking out the mustard king Nadal and world number 1 Novak Djokovic back-to-back in the same earth-coloured tournament in the Spanish capital. Beyond that, it has only three losses in 2022 for 28 wins and four titles.

Clara Burel

Clara Burel at the Miami Open in March 2022.
Clara Burel at the Miami Open in March 2022. © Mark Brown, Getty Images, AFP

In a troubled French tennis, Clara Burel still represents hope given the good 2021 season. Today is the 95th.and His place in the WTA rankings was publicly revealed in 2020 by making it to the third round as the last French representative at Roland-Garros.

But Rennaise hasn’t been at the party since the Grand Slams. The 20-year-old lost the first round of all Majors except for Wimbledon, where he had another round. Returning to his home country of his early successes may allow him to take a step forward.

Jo Wilfried Tsonga

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga at the first round of Wimbledon on July 2, 2019.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga at the first round of Wimbledon on July 2, 2019. AFP

This is “Jo’s” last dance. At the beginning of April, former world number 5 announced that Roland-Garros 2022 will be his last appearance on the court. Along with Richard Gasquet, Gaël Monfils and Gilles Simon, Le Manceau will be the flagship of the Four Musketeers generation that has excited French fans for fifteen years.

>> Also to read: “Tennis: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the smartest of the Four Musketeers”

Since 2018, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has been just a shadow of the player he was before a series of injuries: meniscus crack, calf tear, stomach tear, back pain, sickle cell disease diagnosis… In public, Gunslinger manages to say goodbye to tennis on his own measure. .



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