French Open without Nadal…who’s the next ‘dirt shoe’
The French Open, the second major of the season, is the stage for the next big thing.
Rafael Nadal (Spain-15th), who has won the French Open 14 times, has withdrawn due to a hip injury.
The French Open kicks off on Aug. 28 (local time) at the Stade Roland Garros in Paris, France, and continues through Aug. 11.
The men’s singles will be without two of the “Big Three” who have dominated men’s tennis for more than two decades.
‘Emperor’ Roger Federer (SUI) announced his retirement last year.
Nadal, who hasn’t returned to the court since injuring his hip at the Australian Open in January, held a press conference on April 19 to officially announce that he will miss this year’s French Open. He also announced his intention to retire at the end of the 2024 season.
Of the “Big Three,” only Novak Djokovic (Serbia-3rd) will be competing at the tournament.
It will be the first time in 25 years that the French Open has been played without Federer and Nadal since 1998.
The biggest change is the absence of Nadal. Nadal has been the reigning champion since his first French Open main draw in 2005. There’s a reason the French Open is called “Nadal’s living room.
From 2005 to last year, Nadal played 18 consecutive years at the French Open and won 14 of his 22 major titles at the tournament. Only four times has he failed to lift the trophy. Across the four majors, no player has won more titles at a single event than Nadal at the French Open.
Amid a generational shift in men’s tennis, Nadal’s withdrawal from the French Open opens the door for the next generation of players to cement their place as clay-court emperors.
One of the most prominent candidates to succeed Nadal is current World No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz.
Alcaraz established himself as the frontrunner to succeed the Big Three last year when he became the youngest player in history to win both the Miami Open and Madrid Open on the ATP Tour Masters 1000 Series at the age of 19. At the Madrid Open, he upset Nadal and Djokovic in straight sets.
Alcaraz, who became the youngest player in history to finish the year ranked No. 1, also won two Masters 1000 Series titles this year. He was crowned champion at the BNP Paribas Open and the Madrid Open. In total, he won four ATP Tour titles.
Alcaraz has been strong on clay, going 20-2 this year, with three of his victories coming on clay. He has the highest winning percentage on clay this year. It’s no wonder he’s been nicknamed the next Nadal.
Current world No. 2 Daniil Medvedev (RUS), who rose to No. 1 last year, will also be a strong favorite.
Medvedev has been on a roll lately. He has five top-10 finishes on tour this year, including wins at the Masters 1000 Series event, the Miami Open, and the BNL Italy International.
He was especially in fine form at the BNL Italian International, which is a precursor to the French Open.
Medvedev believes his game has improved on clay compared to previous years. He is 10-2 on clay this year.
The 20-year-old “God” Holger Lune (DEN – 6th) is another favorite to be crowned the next Emperor.
He only has one ATP Tour win this year, but he reached the final at the Monte Carlo Masters and the BNL Italy International, where he finished runner-up. Both tournaments were on clay.
At the BNL Italian International, Lune defeated Djokovic in the quarterfinals. Lune also defeated Djokovic in the final of the Paris Masters last year.
Lourdes (Norway-4), a graduate of Nadal’s Rafael Nadal Academy in Mallorca, Spain, is another up-and-comer.
Of his 10 career ATP Tour titles, nine have come on clay.
He was runner-up at the French Open last year. It was Nadal who stopped him on his way to the final. He lost to Nadal 0-3 (3-6 3-6 0-6).
Djokovic, who is tied with Nadal for the most career major titles, will be looking to win his 23rd.
Djokovic began the year on a high note, winning the Australian Open, but has since faltered. He hasn’t won an ATP Tour event since the Australian Open.
This has been attributed to a bad right elbow.
“My right elbow is not in an ideal condition,” Djokovic, who also suffered a long-term elbow injury in 2017, admitted to the media in mid-March.
In the women’s singles, world number one Iga Cibionte (Poland) will be looking to make it two in a row.
She hasn’t lost the top spot since April last year and won the French Open in 2020 and last year. Two of his three career major titles have come at the French Open.
Last year, the French Open and US Open titles were not the only ones he won.
Last year’s Wimbledon winner and this year’s Australian Open runner-up Elena Rybakina (Kazakhstan, No. 4) and this year’s Australian Open winner, Arina Savalenka (Belarus, No. 2), are among Civion Tech’s opponents.안전놀이터
Civionte’s fitness will be key after she withdrew from the quarterfinals of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) Tour’s BNL Italy International last week with a thigh strain. The Frenchwoman, who said the injury was not serious, has already arrived in Paris and is training.
Meanwhile, no Korean players will be competing in the men’s or women’s singles. Hong Seong-chan (Sejong City Hall), Han Na-rae (Bucheon City Hall) and Jang Soo-jeong (Daegu City Hall) qualified for the men’s singles, but all of them lost in the first round.