Djokovic, Swiatek favourites for French Open title - Somdev Devvarman

Devvarman believes Rafael Nadal has an outside chance since “he has problems and is struggling with his body.”

Novak Djokovic (in picture) is coming into the French Open being “as ready as he can,” says Devvarman.   -  AP

Former Indian tennis player Somdev Devvarman picked Iga Świątek and Novak Djokovic as the frontrunners for the women’s and men’s singles title at the French Open that starts on Sunday.

“She (Iga) took the tennis world by storm winning two years back without dropping a set. She similarly comes into 2022 in strong form with five tournament wins and just three matches lost this year,” Devvarman told Sportstar in a chat organised by Sony Sports, the official broadcaster for the French Open in India.

“But that being said, the exciting thing about women's tennis is there are quite a few one or two-time slam winners who are in the draw. The likes of Bianca Andreescu, Emma Raducanu, Sloane Stephens, and Jeļena Ostapenko have won matches and walk into a slam believing they can win,” added Devvarman.

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Commenting on the men’s draw, the 37-year-old former Indian Davis Cup player said Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Carlos Alcaraz Garfia will be the top-tier candidates.

“Novak is coming into the French Open being as ready as he can. He did not play a lot at the start of the year and even though he was the No. 1 player, you saw him losing normal matches. But he slowly started playing better with more matches under his belt and went on to win a big tournament like Rome.”

“With Rafa (Nadal) you can’t count him out but he has problems and is struggling with his body. We need to see if his body allows him to do what his mind wants,” Devvarman explained.

“Alcaraz is the most exciting talent in 15 years and he appears ready to win a slam. But at the same time, it is one thing to be ready to win but another to actually win. Going from three sets to five sets is a different story though I feel he is physically ready. He is strong and is the most exciting player.”

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