Egypt's health ministry using app, drug deliveries to follow up with coronavirus patients isolating at home    Ethiopia passes supplementary budget to help absorb virus impact    New report alleges killings, mass detentions in Ethiopia    AC Milan president opposes plan to restart with Cup matches    Russian league to allow soccer fans in stadiums    UEFA to fasttrack competitions in one venue, says Getafe president    European head of WTO would be "wonderful" says EU trade chief    Sudan army officer dies, soldiers hurt in attack by Ethiopian militia: SUNA    'It's like a return to life', despite an empty auditorium: Paris orchestra plays Strauss in COVID-19 era    South Korea seeks to import anti-viral remdesivir as new virus cases emerge    Twitter attaches disclaimer to Trump's Minneapolis tweet for 'glorifying violence'    Ethiopia says it won't accept Egypt's ‘historic rights' to Nile water    Egypt's enemies try to discredit state's anti-pandemic efforts, achievements: Al-Sisi    Maait aims to turn Covid-19 plight into power to promote human resource development    Al-Sisi ratifies financial, technical cooperation agreements with Germany    Minneapolis mayor calls for arrest of police officer who knelt on George Floyd's neck    Spain says it will do all it can to reverse Nissan closure, workers protest    China approves Hong Kong security law as tensions with U.S. rise    Salah did not pressure administration to include players on team: Ghazal    Huawei CFO loses key court fight against extradition to US    UK PM Johnson to go to Brussels next month for Brexit talks    How did Egypt use the internet during Ramadan?    Egypt removes 484 illegal constructions and encroachments on Nile    Health Ministry urges retired medical staff to join coronavirus fray    173 illegal constructions on waterways in Damietta referred to military prosecution    MACIC celebrates World Day for Cultural Diversity with webinar    Grand Museum receives 346 artefacts from Old, Middle Kingdoms    Unique late Ancient Egyptian cemetery discovered in Minya Governorate    European football set to restart despite coronavirus    Budget airlines put squeeze on airports in coronavirus cost drive    Afrobeat, rap, house and more: Apple Music is launching its first radio show in Africa    Book Review: Power on the Nature of Power    AfDB approves $500,000 in emergency coronavirus pandemic aid for Egypt    Egypt's stock Exchange back to regular trading hours on Sunday    Dubai government offices to resume work with 50% employees next Sunday, 100% on June 14    Disney unveils plans to reopen in mid-July    WHO: There is no evidence hydroxychloroquine helps treat coronavirus    Egypt confirms record jump of 910 coronavirus cases on Wednesday    Sisi congratulates Egyptians on occasion of Eid Al-Fitr    Egypt's Sisi congratulates Egyptians on the occasion of Eid El-Fitr    Egypt's interior ministry gives gifts to families of policemen killed or injured in the line of duty    Egyptian police kill 21 terrorists who plotted attacks on Eid El-Fitr    Italy's football federation sets August 20 as deadline for finishing season    Egypt's decision to resume sports activities breathes life into hopes to restart league    Egyptian Premier League final decision to be taken before May-end: minister    Egypt's 12 MPs came into contact with coronavirus infected parliamentarian    iRead launches new activities, competitions to pread the passion for reading    British Council in Egypt makes its digital library for free amid coronavirus    

Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.

Tennis: Nadal and Djokovic head French Open cast as Federer returns
Published in Ahram Online on 24 - 05 - 2019

For the first time in four years the big three in men's tennis will all be present at the French Open, all striving to etch another remarkable storyline in the red Parisian dirt.
That Spain's undisputed king of clay Rafael Nadal is hunting a record-extending and almost unbelievable 12th Roland Garros title is remarkable in itself.
But then world number one Novak Djokovic arrives on the cusp of becoming the first man in the professional era to twice hold all four Grand Slam titles simultaneously.
And then there is Roger Federer, back from his self-imposed French Open exile since 2015, aiming to reclaim the title for a second time, a decade after the first.
As befitting this old city steeped in stories for the ages, the plotlines at this year's tournament run far deeper than the ambitions of the central characters.
A new order has emerged with fearless Greek Stefanos Tsistipas jumping to the head of a queue of hungry young talents seeking to barge the establishment to one side.
The 20-year-old Athenian has wins over both Federer and Nadal this year and will arrive without any of the mental baggage collected by so many others who have tried and failed to knock Nadal off his throne.
Austrian Dominic Thiem, who Nadal beat to win an 11th title last year, is knocking loudly on the door, while Germany's Alexander Zverev, Russian duo Daniil Medvedev and Karen Khachanov and exciting Canadians Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger Aliassime will add to the rich mixture.
Throw in rejuvenated former champion Stan Wawrinka, the one-man circus that is Australian Nick Kyrgios and the mercurial Italian Fabio Fognini and the next fortnight is unmissable.
Nadal's stranglehold on the French Open is one of the most incredible dominations ever in sport -- he has lost just two matches at Roland Garros since winning on debut in 2005.
Nadal vulnerable
This year injuries have hampered him and when he lost semi-finals in three successive claycourt events, Monte Carlo, Barcelona and Madrid, it seemed he was vulnerable.
He swept to the title in Rome, though, last week against Djokovic and, as usual, he will start as the man to beat as he seeks an 18th Grand Slam title, two short of Federer's record.
"I think he is peaking involuntarily, and he has going to be so much better come the quarter-finals or semi-finals than he is now," former champion Mats Wilander, working as an analyst for Eurosport told Reuters.
"Maybe his claycourt season has been more of a rollercoaster ride this year but at the same time you can get away with that at the French Open over five sets."
Twelve months ago Djokovic, who turned 32 this week, arrived in Paris in a strange funk, still grappling with his game.
A quarter-final exit sparked a dramatic return to his best though and the Serb went on to win Wimbledon, the U.S. Open and this year's Australian Open, taking his Grand Slam haul to 15.
A slight dip followed his Melbourne success but after winning the Madrid title this month he will arrive in Paris confident of repeating his "Djoker Slam" of 2016. Victory over Andy Murray in the Roland Garros final meant he became the first man to hold all four majors at the same time since Rod Laver in 1969.
"That would be unbelievable, for me that would be a bigger deal than Rafa winning 12 French Opens," Wilander said.
Federer made his French Open debut in 1999 and but for Nadal would have bagged more than the one title he managed in 2009 when he beat Robin Soderling in the final to complete his career Slam.
The Swiss is 38 in August and this could be his final shot at repeating that feat.
As story twists go, that would take some beating.

Clic here to read the story from its source.