Roger Federer will be drawn into the same half of the table as the dominators Nadal and Djokovic at the French Open in Paris. Nevertheless, there can be no talk of Lospech for the Basel bidder.
Novak Djokovic may already be waiting in the quarter-finals, in the semifinals there would be a duel with Sand King Rafael Nadal according to the seeding list – Roger Federer’s draw for the French Open has it all. Especially in the second week, with the best of intentions, it is not possible to see how the Basel bidder should jump over all the hurdles. Only: this year, reaching the second week of the tournament would be a success.
Federer’s focus is on the lawn season, which is why he primarily wants to gain match practice in Paris. He recently said himself that he needs around ten serious fights to get back into competition mode. After the surprising opening defeat against Andujar at the comeback in Geneva, there are still nine before the second Grand Slam tournament of the year. The 39-year-old is therefore primarily dependent on match practice.
In any case, Federer himself describes the tournament victory in Roland Garros as unrealistic. And that’s exactly why it’s important to look at the maestro’s draw from a slightly different perspective this year. It’s not about who he would have to beat to win the tournament for the second time in his career. Much more important is which tasks Federer has to master in the first week. And a lot seems to be possible.
Everything from the round of 16 is an encore
At the beginning, the 20-time major winner has to deal with a qualifier. If the start goes as planned, there may be a duel with companion Marin Cilic in lap two, who last lost out to Dominic Stricker in Geneva. If the Croat does not survive his first round, Federer would meet the French Arthur Rinderknech, who was equipped with a wildcard. Either way, all solvable tasks – even for a Federer without match practice.
Even in the third round, Federer could probably avoid the biggest sand specialists. According to the seed list, Taylor Fritz would be the most likely opponent. The American feels more comfortable on faster documents. Other possible third-round opponents are Joao Sousa, Mathias Bourgue and the German Dominik Koepfer.
From the second week of the tournament, much higher hurdles would then await the Swiss. But even a possible round of 16 against Berrettini or Auger-Aliassime would be an addition. Because with a view to Wimbledon it is clear: If Federer can play at least three games, he is already fully on schedule. A realistic goal – not least thanks to this draw.