Tennis News: Surprise contender for French Open and John McEnroe's verdict

In tennis news for Tuesday, who might be a surprise French Open contender and Johnny Mac drops the true on Novak Djokovic.
Tennis news for Tuesday
Tennis news for Tuesday / Elsa/GettyImages

The French Open is more wide open this year than in any in almost two decades. Rafael Nadal has already lost and Novak Djokovic is not in great form. Jannik Sinner is ATP No. 2 and Carlos Alcaraz is No. 3, but both might still be working their way back into form after suffering recent injuries. No. 4 Alexander Zverev defeated Nadal in the first round and he might be the favorite at Roland Garros currently.

Speaking with Tennis365, tennis commentator Marcus Buckland has another name to throw out as a potential favorite, and the pick is a bit surprising. Buckland thinks Hubert Hurkacz is a real threat in Paris. To be fair, Buckland said he asked one of his sons who they thought the favorite might be at the French Open and they said Hurkacz. Buckland did not really give a reason why they would say Hurkacz.

No offense to Hurkacz, who is ranked No. 8, but he has won just one clay-court tournament in his career, which came at the Estoril Open. That is a bit like expecting Ben Shelton to win at Roland Garros because he won the clay-court Houston Open earlier in 2024. Neither Shelton nor Hurkacz should be thought of as a favorite in Paris.

Hubert Hurkacz named a favorite of the French Open and John McEnroe talks about Novak Djokovic

Hurkacz also barely has a .500 record on clay in his career. He is 34-30 and had a losing record until he won in Estoril. Expecting him to go from a long-time loser on clay to suddenly winning the French Open seems like a bit much.

Speaking of sometimes being a bit much but always entertaining and informative, John McEnroe has some thoughts on Novak Djokovic's current form. Djokovic is still atop the ATP rankings, but he has yet to even make a final in 2024. McEnroe is not completely sure what is wrong with Djokovic, but he said in a press conference ahead of Roland Garros that Djokovic seems "more human."

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McEnroe said, "I don’t know what’s wrong with him, if it’s because of a physical issue, motivation, age, distractions outside of tennis. Right now, he seems more human."

Of course, Djokovic is still the returning champion at the French Open and has a way of playing his best during Grand Slams. He certainly cannot be counted out of winning his 25th major title. That would, of course, mean Djokovic is breaking his own record for most Grand Slams won.

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