Paris, France (Sports Network) - The draw for the 2012 French Open was
revealed Friday, and if world No. 1 Novak Djokovic wants to capture Roland
Garros and the coveted career Grand Slam he could have to get past
Roger Federer in the semifinals in two weeks.
Djokovic will try to capture a fourth straight Grand Slam title overall and is
trying to become the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to win all four majors
in a calendar year this year.
The three-time French Open semifinalist lost to Federer in the French semis
last year, which halted the super Serb's 43-match winning streak and prevented
him from reaching a first-ever French Open finale.
Djokovic hasn't lost at a Grand Slam event since, rattling off his first-ever
Wimbledon title, his first-ever U.S. Open championship, and a third Australian
His quarterfinal opponent in Paris could be world No. 5 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of
Some other possible quarterfinal matchups at the French could be Federer
versus 2009 U.S. Open champion Juan Martin del Potro or seventh-ranked Tomas
Berdych; six-time French Open champ Rafael Nadal against eighth-seeded Janko
Tipsarevic; and No. 4 Andy Murray versus No. 6 David Ferrer.
Seeded No. 1 at the French Open for the first time, Djokovic will open against
97th-ranked Potito Starace of Italy and could meet two-time major champ
Lleyton Hewitt in the second.
The top seed has won the title just 12 times in the 44 French Opens played
The two-time reigning champion Nadal will begin his attempt to win an Open
Era-record record seventh French Open title against 111th-ranked Simone
Bolelli of Italy. Nadal currently shares the record of six titles with the
great Bjorn Borg.
Nadal could face 6-foot-10 massive-serving Croat Ivo Karlovic in the third
round and the three-time Grand Slam runner-up Murray in the semifinals.
The 10-time major titlist Nadal beat the 2009 champion Federer in last year's
French Open final and has beaten the Swiss icon in four finals at Roland
Nadal is an amazing 45-1 lifetime on the famed red clay at the French.
The 16-time Grand Slam winner Federer will face German Tobias Kamke in round
one. He would surpass Jimmy Connors' 233-49 record for most Open Era Grand
Slam match wins if he reaches the third round. The Swiss great will appear at
his 50th straight major event.
Federer could face 28th-seeded American Andy Roddick in the third round
Murray will face Japan's Tatsuma Ito in his first match next week. The British
star could play rising Aussie Bernard Tomic in the third round, followed by a
round-of-16 meeting with No. 17 seed Richard Gasquet or 16th-seeded Alexandr
Dolgopolov. Sixth-seeded David Ferrer or No. 10 John Isner could be potential
quarterfinal opponents for the talented Scot.
The last French finalist at Roland Garros was Henri Leconte in 1988, while the
last French champion was Yannick Noah in 1983.
The 2012 French Open will get underway Sunday in Paris.
The Sports Network