Tennis

Alexander Zverev names three French Open favourites as he shares Rafa Nadal injury concern


Alexander Zverev has shared his three favourites for the French Open following Rafael Nadal’s injury scare in Rome. The world No 3 expressed his “hope” for the 13-time champion to be fit, but admitted he thought Carlos Alcaraz, Novak Djokovic or Stefanos Tsitsipas could take the title from the ‘King of Clay’ this year.

Nadal was playing just the second tournament of his comeback from a hip injury he picked up in Indian Wells, but this time it was his chronic foot issue that saw him lose a 6-1 lead over Denis Shapovalov as the Canadian won their Italian Open third-round clash 1-6 7-5 6-2. Zverev was then informed of the world No 4’s injury scare, and shared his concerns for Nadal’s preparation going into the French Open.

“I didn’t know that Rafa got injured. I’m sorry,” the former champion in Rome said. “That explains the third set a little bit. Yeah, I feel sorry for Rafa. Hopefully he can be fit. He has 10 days’ time to be able to play in Paris.”

Zverev had previously touted Carlos Alcaraz as one of the heavy favourites for the French Open title after losing to the 19-year-old in the Madrid Masters final last week, and was asked whether Nadal’s injury made the world No 6 an even bigger favourite, but he added two more names to the list. “Look, I think Alcaraz is one of the favorites. Novak is one of the favorites. Tsitsipas,” he admitted.

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