Sports : Roland-Garros: Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer all in the same half of a draw

Defending champion Nadal and world number 1 Djokovic cannot meet in the final as they did last year – Nadal came out on top in straight sets – with the pair facing each other in the semi-finals at the square.

However, Djokovic has the small problem of potentially having to defeat 20-time grand slam champion Federer to get there, with the Swiss potentially facing Djokovic in the quarter-finals.

Nadal will begin his efforts to win a record 14th title at Roland Garros with a first-round match against Australia’s Alexei Popyrin, Djokovic will face American Tennys Sandgren and eighth seed Federer will face a qualifier.

Federer’s preparations for the French Open were shaken by a surprise loss to Pablo Andújar at the Geneva Open last week, in what was Federer’s first game since returning from injury in March.

LILY: Roger Federer and Serena Williams suffer shocking defeats to shake Roland Garros preparations

Russian world number 2 Daniil Medvedev, double Roland-Garros finalist Dominic Thiem, Greek star Stefanos Tsitsipas and German Alexander Zverev are in the other half of the table.

In the women’s draw, defending champion Iga Swiatek is in the same half as world No.1 and 2019 winner Ashleigh Barty, who withdrew from last year’s tournament due to the pandemic.

World number 2 Naomi Osaka, who has announced that she will not attend press conferences during Roland Garros, is looking to overtake the third round at Roland Garros for the first time and will face Romanian Patricia Maria Tig in the first round.

Serena Williams, who hopes to tie Margaret Court’s record of 24 Grand Slam titles, was drawn in the same half as Osaka and will face Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu in the first round.
LILY: Naomi Osaka says she won’t give a press conference during Roland Garros

Williams’ preparations for his attempt to tie the record have been far from ideal, with the French Open’s No.7 seed falling to a surprise straight-set loss to Kateřina Siniaková at the Open d ‘Emilia Romagna last week.

Spain’s Carla Suárez Navarro will return to tennis for the first time since beating cancer and will face 2017 US Open champion Sloane Stephens in the first round.

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