|2013 champion, Rafael Nadal|
1. Rafael Nadal-anything less than a title at Roland Garros would be a disappointment for the world number one. Of Nadal’s three titles this year, two have been on clay, but that being said, he has not been the usual dominant Rafa.
2013 result: defeated David Ferrer in the final.
2. Novak Djokovic-similar to Rafa, anything less than a title here would be rather disappointing, especially since Novak has gotten off to a great start this year (24-3 record). Novak could be matched up with Federer in the semis. Novak has lost to Federer twice already in 2014.
2013 result: lost to Rafael Nadal in the semifinals.
3. Stanislas Wawrinka-he is putting together his best year as a pro with three titles to his name already. The title at the Australian Open, will only push Stanislas harder to claim another Grand Slam this year and why not, seeing as he has played Rafa and Novak very tough.
2013 result: lost in the quarterfinals to Rafael Nadal.
4. Roger Federer-still one of the most feared tennis players around, despite his age. Roger will be looking for only his second title at Roland Garros, although it should be mentioned that Rafa has stopped him in his tracks a few times.
2013 result: lost in the quarterfinals to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
5. David Ferrer-he is an absolute handful for whom ever his opponent is. His energy and stamina alone are sometimes enough to beat his rival. Ferrer has never claimed a title at Roland Garros, but he came close last year.
2013 result: lost to Rafael Nadal in the finals.
6. Tomas Berdych-saying that the Roland Garros has not been kind to Tomas would be an understatement. In the last three tournaments, Tomas has not gotten past the round of 16, which is unacceptable for a player of his quality.
2013 result: lost to Gael Monfils in the round of 128
7. Andy Murray-a 21-9 record and no titles in 2014 for Andy has some worried, especially when you take in the fact that he has struggled at the Roland Garros as well.
2013 result: lost to David Ferrer in the quarterfinals.
8. Milos Raonic-he has had only one big win in 2014 and that was against Andy Murray at the Indian Wells tournament. Milos has not defeated a player ranked higher than 55 in the world at Roland Garros (Michael Llodra last year). If Milos has any chance at going deep in this tournament, that ace has to be working for him.
2013 result: lost to Kevin Anderson in the round of 32.
9. Kei Nishikori-has beaten the likes of Raonic, Ferrer (twice), and Federer this year and is playing the best tennis of his career. If Nishikori keeps playing the way he has in 2014, he could be destined for a long run in France. The back injury he suffered in Madrid worries me just a little bit.
2013 result: lost in the round of 16 to Rafael Nadal.
10. John Isner-holds a 5-5 record all-time record at Roland Garros. Seems like clay just is not meant for the big man out of the U.S.
2013 result: lost to Tommy Haas in the round of 32.
(23)Gael Monfils-has played some good tennis in 2014, winning one title and losing in the finals of Qatar to Nadal. Monfils has Hanescu in the first round and a possible match-up vs Fognini on the third round.
Early Match Up To Watch
Lukasz Kubot vs. (18) Ernests Gulbis-Kubot has not had a good 2014 campaign, but he is still a veteran tennis player who can give Gulbis all that he can handle.
(1)Nadal vs (11)Dimitrov
(3)Wawrinka vs (7)Murray
(6)Berdych vs (4)Federer
(9)Nishikori vs (2)Djokovic
(1)Nadal vs (3)Wawrinka
(4)Federer vs (2)Djokovic
(1)Nadal vs (2)Djokovic
Ogi is a graduate of Humber College’s Sport Management program. He is the founder of Blago Blogger Sports.