In an interview to Sky Sport, pundit Laura Golarsa commented on Roger Federer deciding to play in Madrid for the first time since 2015. "Roger heads into Madrid in unknown conditions because he has not competed on clay since 2016 and he last competed in an official match in Miami.
His decision to play in Madrid is understandable because the altitude conditions fit him, they are more similar to the French Open. The two events have the same groundsmen," said Golarsa, who also commented on the Alexander Zverev's bad season: "Zverev is going through a tough time.
Retaining his Madrid crown will not be easy, I do not expect him to do that. The German has been dealing with personal issues for a while, he lost too many matches in the early rounds this year. He is a different player to last year, he seems to be not as confident as he used to be.
But he is a champion, world No. 4, he was also No. 3, he will definitely be at his best level again." On Rafael Nadal's struggles on clay, Golarsa concluded: "Last year in Madrid, Nadal struggled a lot, but for several years he played good also winning titles.
I think his chances will be bigger in Rome. He has not played too many matches in the last year, often dealing with injuries. But I would consider him a favorite in the upcoming French Open. You cannot write him off even if Thiem is playing great."