Boris Becker thinks the weather conditions in Paris could definitely have an impact on how well Novak Djokovic does at the French Open. In rainy and cold conditions, clay as a surface tends to become slower. In Rome, Djokovic suffered a three-set quarterfinal loss to Holger Rune - in a match played in rainy and cold conditions.
Djokovic turned 36 earlier this week and Becker suggests the Serb would like to avoid playing a young star like Rune in rainy and very slow clay-court conditions. “I think the weather will also play a big role. When it's hot, the red ash in Paris is almost like a hard court.
When it's rainy, cold and wet like in Rome, it becomes a difficult, slow court and then Novak has a harder time than other players. I think the question is: how does he get into the tournament? How is the draw? When does he meet these young, strong players? Is that in the last 16 already, is it at the quarter-finals? A lot depends on the draw, but really also on the weather.
On a sunny Parisian spring, he’s still one of the top favorites," Becker said on Eurosport’s Das Gelbe vom Ball podcast.
How does Djokovic's French Open draw look?
On Friday, Djokovic learned his projected path to the French Open title.
Djokovic could have his first big test in the third round, when he is projected to meet Alejandro Davidovich Fokina - the same player who stunned him at the Monte Carlo Masters in 2022. Then, Djokovic is projected to meet Hubert Hurkacz and Andrey Rublev in the round-of-16 and quarterfinal, respectively.
Djokovic has beaten Hurkacz five times, while he has easily beaten Rublev in each of their last three meetings. In the French Open semifinal, Djokovic is projected to meet Carlos Alcaraz. Going into the tournament, many believe the French Open title will be won by either Djokovic or Alcaraz.
In the French Open final, Djokovic could meet the likes of Rune, Daniil Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Jannik Sinner.
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