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Dinosaur Đoković was left alone in the fight with the younger guard of the heirs to the throne



The draw will take place on Thursday

The ravages of time started or stopped the big four, so that from the quartet of Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray, only the 36-year-old Serb is standing in the trenches of Roland Garros, who would become the most successful player in the history of Grand Slam tournaments with his third laurel in Paris.

The 41-year-old Federer has been retired for some time, the 14-time winner of Paris, the almost 37-year-old Nadal, was stopped by an injury, the 36-year-old Murray decided to fully devote himself to Wimbledon, so that the veteran flag will be carried by Djokovic, who would remain alone at the top among men with 23 Grand Slam wins, equaling the legendary Serena Williams.

Since 2005, apart from the trio of Nadal, Federer and Djokovic, only Stan Wawrinka has won the title in Paris in 2015.

Djokovic, who is now tied with Nadal with 22 major laurels, does not hide the fact that he would like to be at the top alone. “Maybe at the end of my career, a part of me would regret not having more titles than he did, but at the end of the day, you always ask yourself, ‘How much is enough?’Đoković told The National at the end of February.Of course you have to be competitive, be hungry to win and have a wolf mentality, but in the end you always say to yourself: ‘You have really achieved a lot, be proud of it, grateful and humble that it was possible for you.’

Djokovic only made eight appearances on the sand

The Serb’s preparations for a third straight title at Roland Garros, which would see him level with Ivan Lendl, Mats Wilander and Gustav Kuerten, have been anything but ideal. He played only eight matches on the sand due to injuries and poor form. Although he noticeably raised the level of his game at the last tournament in Rome, he had to concede superiority to Holger Rune in the quarterfinals.

Carlos Alcaraz won Buenos Aires, Barcelona and Madrid on the sand this year.  Photo: EPA

Đoković is the second favorite at the bookies, the world number one tennis player Carlos Alcaraz has a smaller advantage, who will be the first seed in this Grand Slam tournament for the first time. The 20-year-old Spaniard has been excellent on the sand this season. He suffered two defeats in 22 matches and won tournaments in Buenos Aires, Barcelona and Madrid. The impression was somewhat spoiled only in Rome, where he was defeated by the Hungarian Fabian Maroszan.

20 years ago, his coach Juan Carlos Ferrero won Roland Garros, and Alcaraz was only one month old at the time. The young Spaniard knows how to cope with pressure, which he proved in September when he conquered New York.

Alcaraz and Djokovic could play before the final

Alcaraz and Djokovic could end up in the same half of the draw, so they could not meet in the final. This was ensured by Daniil Medvedev, who, after an unexpected victory in Rome, overtook the Serb and pushed him to third place in the ATP rankings.

Despite this success, bookmakers do not trust the Russian. He has an odds of 11 and is being placed behind Rune (odds of 8) and even Stefanos Tsitsipas (9), who is yet to win a tournament this season. The wider circle of favorites also includes Jannik Sinner (15), last year’s finalist Casper Ruud (17) and Monte Carlo winner Andrej Rubljov (31).

Triathlon for number one

After 2014, the main tournament will again pass without a Slovenian player. Reminder: in the years from 2015 to 2017, Aljaž Bedene performed under the British flag.

The fight for the number one in world tennis will also be an added charm in Paris, as the leader Alcaraz and the third Djokovic are separated by 860 points. The Spaniard and the Serb reached the quarterfinals last year, Medvedev reached the round of 16.

The tournament will start on Sunday. The draw will take place on Thursday at 2 p.m.

Source: Rtvslo

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