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Stefanos Tsitsipas shortlists Carlos Alcaraz and Novak Djokovic as the two French Open men's favorites
The Greek has been stopped by both competitors during a clay season that has seen him successfully defend his Monte Carlo crown, add a runner-up effort in Rome and semifinal showing at Madrid.
Published May 19, 2022
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Stefanos Tsitsipas has named two favorites for the men's title at Roland Garros.
"Right now Carlos Alcaraz or Novak Djokovic. They both play great, great tennis. I would put them as favorites," said the 23-year-old from Greece, speaking to press at Rome.
The teenaged Alcaraz has been the season's new sensation, winning Miami, Barcelona and Madrid in recent weeks and reaching No. 6 in the rankings. Djokovic had a slow start but won the Masters event in Rome coming into the French Open.
Though Tsitsipas had a good lead-up on clay, winning the Monte Carlo Masters and reaching the final of Rome—where he fell to Djokovic—he isn't placing himself among the top favorites at the moment.
"Right now I need to improve a few things in my game," said the No. 4 seed. "I don't know if I'm going to get there, but I hope I do with my hard work by the time Roland Garros begins.
''I'd love myself to get around with these players and be there with them. But I will really need to put a bit more attention to detail in the next couple of weeks."
A notable player he didn't mention was Rafael Nadal, who is chasing a record 14th title at Roland Garros but entering the event with injury concerns. The 35-year-old from Spain was affected by his chronic foot condition during a third-round defeat to Denis Shapovalov in Rome.
Nadal himself isn't sure what shape he'll start the event. "What can happen in the next couple of days, I don't know. What can happen in one week, I really don't know now," he said at Rome. "But maybe in two days things are better, that's the thing that I have on my foot."
The No. 5 is now on the grounds of Roland Garros and practiced in front of a large crowd on the stadium four days before the start of play.
Djokovic agreed with Tsitsipas's assessment of his chances, saying he's improved with each event he's played following an illness before the Monte Carlo Masters.
"I would rate myself as one of the favorites," said Djokovic. "But the way I've been feeling on the court and off the court I really think I can go far."
The Serb is the top seed at the French Open.