Andy Roddick issues bold prediction about Rafael Nadal's RG chances amid horror draw

Roddick reacts to Nadal meeting Alexander Zverev in the French Open first round.

by Dzevad Mesic
Andy Roddick issues bold prediction about Rafael Nadal's RG chances amid horror draw
© Getty Images Sport - Dan Istitene

Andy Roddick was pretty much left in shock and disbelief after learning Alexander Zverev would be Rafael Nadal's opening opponent at the French Open as the American tennis legend boldly predicted the Spaniard would go on to reach the semifinal if he successfully overcame the recent Rome Masters champion.

Nadal, who is returning to the French Open for the first time since 2022 and probably having his last run at Roland Garros, is set to battle against No. 4 seed Zverev - in what will be a rematch of their infamous 2022 French Open semifinal when the German tore several ankle ligaments in a terrifying scene. 

But compared to Nadal's previous runs, he is not entering this year's French Open as one of the top favorites for the title as the situation with the Spaniard's injury issues and form is well-documented.

As Roddick was breaking down the French Open bracket and learning about first-round matchups, he started cursing and just being stunned after learning about the Nadal and Zverev matchup. 

“I hate what I'm about to say, I hate what I'm about to say. This has so many layers. Obviously a handful of favorites coming in, last time they played at this tournament Zverev breaks his ankle and is out for a year plus," Roddick said on the Served with Andy Roddick podcast.

"And Rafa, our dear Rafa. Our friend, his last Roland Garros, Rafa. I'm not going to say it, [to producer] can you say it for me? I can't, I'm not going to say it out loud."

Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zverev
Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zverev © Getty Images Sport - Clive Brunskill

Roddick: If Nadal gets through this, he will reach the French Open semifinal

After the podcast's producer dropped Zverev's name, Roddick added: “If we’re going to spin it positively for Rafa, I think his best chance of making a deep run is getting through a match like this first."

Then, co-host Jon Wertheim mentioned that Nadal and Zverev are again about to play at the same tournament and same venue where the German suffered an injury that he initially feared would end his career. Also, Wertheim noted that Nadal is a record 14-time French Open champion and that the crowd will fully stand behind him. 

With that being said, Wertheim suggested that Nadal will probably have some psychological advantage when he and Zverev meet.

“Rafa’s going to the semifinals if he wins this match," Roddick added.

Andy Roddick Rafael Nadal Alexander Zverev