French Open 2019: Tournament preview, key players and TV listing
The French Open 2019 is set to start from May 26 onwards. This edition, the focus would be on former number one player Roger Federer. He returns to Roland Garros for the first time in four years. Meanwhile, the King of Clay, Rafael Nadal enters as the favorite. In the women's section, Simona Halep will look to defend her title. Here's the tournament preview.
Federer returns to the scenes after four years
Third-seed Roger Federer will be aiming to show his mettle on his return to Roland Garros. The 37-year-old missed the 2016 French Open with a back injury, as he skipped the last two seasons to preserve his body. Federer, who appeared in the Madrid Open recently, has played down his chances to clinch the title. One expects him to provide a stern fight though.
It's a bit of a question mark for me: Federer
"It's a bit of a question mark for me. I feel like I'm playing good tennis, but is it enough against the absolute top guys when it really comes to the crunch? I'm not sure if it's in my racquet," said Federer regarding his chances.
Nadal prime favorite to bag the French crown
17-time Grand Slam champion Nadal enters the tournament with an eye on his 12th crown in Paris. It will be an ultimate challenge to stop him. Novak Djokovic will be Nadal's main test in the latter stages. "I don't care if I'm the favorite. The only favourite that matters is the one who has the cup at home in two weeks' time," said Rafa.
In-form Djokovic will look to upstage Rafa
Djokovic is in prime form after winning the Madrid Open and reaching the final in Rome. The Serbian, who won the Australian Open this year, is bidding to hold all four Grand Slam titles for the second time in his illustrious career. He cited Rafa as his biggest threat. "Nadal, number one favourite, without a doubt, than everyone else," said Djokovic.
Defender Halep to be tested by world number one Osaka
In the women's section, world number three and defending champion Simona Halep has stated that she has no expectations in terms of defending the title. Her biggest challenge will be in the form of Naomi Osaka. She goes into the tourney as the top seed and is aiming to win a third Slam in a row. The women's singles pool is more open.
Injury issues the main concern for Serena
Serena Williams will be looking to fend off injury issues in the French Open 2019. The veteran star, who reached the finals of the Wimbledon and US Open 2018, has seen a knee injury plaguing her this season. She was forced to withdraw from all the three tournaments that she participated in 2019. The question about her fitness levels remains before the tournament starts.
Info: TV listing, dates and prize money
The French Open starts from May 26 and will end on June 9. The prize money is a staggering €2,300,000 for the singles winners. The tourney will be telecast live on Star Sports Select 1 and Star Sports Select 1 HD.