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SportDjokovic facing tricky Roland Garros opener

04:45  27 may  2019
04:45  27 may  2019 Source:

Del Potro focusing on fitness after opening Roland Garros win

Del Potro focusing on fitness after opening Roland Garros win Juan Martin del Potro said his "main goal" at Roland Garros is still to regain full fitness following a recent injury absence, after reaching the French Open second round on Tuesday. The Argentinian eighth seed recovered from a set down against Chilean Nicolas Jarry to win 3-6, 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 and set up a clash with Japan's Yoshihito Nishioka. The former US Open champion only returned to action after a knee injury earlier this month, but has looked in strong form, reaching the Italian Open quarter-finals before losing to world number one Novak Djokovic despite holding match points.

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Djokovic facing tricky Roland Garros opener© CHRISTOPHE SIMON Djokovic is looking for a second French Open title

Novak Djokovic begins his bid for a fourth consecutive Grand Slam title on Monday against Poland's Hubert Hurkacz at Roland Garros, while Serena Williams and Rafael Nadal also open their campaigns.

Here, AFP Sport looks at three matches to watch on the second day of the French Open:

Novak Djokovic (SRB x1) v Hubert Hurkacz (POL)

-- First meeting

World number one Djokovic can become only the second man in history to hold all four Grand Slams simultaneously twice if he triumphs in Paris.

Djokovic facing tricky Roland Garros opener© Thomas SAMSON Williams withdrew from last year's French Open before her fourth-round match against Sharapova

The 32-year-old has completely turned his fortunes around since dropping out of the world's top 20 last year following a shock quarter-final loss to Marco Cecchinato. Victory at Wimbledon was his first at a major since 2016, and he has since added two more to move to 15 in total -- behind only Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal on the all-time list.

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Djokovic facing tricky Roland Garros opener© Christophe ARCHAMBAULT Nadal lifted a record-extending 11th French Open title last year

But Djokovic may not have things all his own way against the 22-year-old Hurkacz on Court Philippe Chatrier. The Pole has had an excellent 2019 so far, rising to 43rd in the rankings after runs to the last 16 in Madrid and the Indian Wells quarter-finals.

Serena Williams (USA x10) v Vitalia Diatchenko (RUS)

-- Williams leads head-to-head 1-0

Williams arrives in Paris still looking for a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title having failed to lift a major title since returning last year after giving birth to her daughter.

But the American has only played four matches since losing to Karolina Pliskova at the Australian Open, struggling for form and fitness.

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Tags: French Open WTA Grand Slam, French Open ATP Grand Slam , Benoit Paire, Francesca Schiavone, Garbine Muguruza, Marcel Granollers, Novak Djokovic , Rafael Nadal. Tennis Channel's Daily Serve recaps Day 2 at Roland Garros . PARIS (AP) — If Novak Djokovic was hoping to take a

He arrived at Roland Garros in peak condition and high on confidence. "This is the tournament I was preparing for, so to say, for last couple of Djokovic faces a tricky opener against Poland's 43rd-ranked Hubert Hurkacz with a possible second-round against Sam Querrey, the American who beat

All eyes will be on her as she returns to Roland Garros on Monday, having withdrawn from the tournament 12 months ago ahead of a scheduled last-16 clash against old rival Maria Sharapova.

Russian Diatchenko is ranked a lowly 82nd in the world, and retired from her only previous match against Williams at the 2015 US Open while trailing 6-0, 2-0.

Rafael Nadal (ESP x2) v Yannick Hanfmann (GER)

-- First meeting

Nadal starts his tilt at a record-extending 12th Roland Garros title against German qualifier Yannick Hanfmann in the second match on Chatrier.

The 17-time Grand Slam champion comes into the tournament as the second seed, and having beaten old foe Djokovic in the Italian Open final. Nadal holds an incredible 86-2 win-loss record in the French Open, having only lost to Robin Soderling and Djokovic since making his tournament debut in 2005.

World number 184 Hanfmann has come through three rounds of qualifying to set up the once-in-a-lifetime clash in Paris, but thinks being partially deaf could be a slight advantage.

"A centre court full of spectators doesn't affect me," he told German daily Bild in an interview.

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