French Open 2023 draw: Carlos Alcaraz and Novak Djokovic in same half; Daniil Medvedev faces tough test

Sports Thursday 25/May/2023 20:37 PM
French Open 2023 draw: Carlos Alcaraz and Novak Djokovic in same half; Daniil Medvedev faces tough test

Paris: World No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz and 22-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic have landed in the same half of the French Open 2023 draw. Clay-court Grand Slam will be held from May 28 to June 11.

The Spaniard, who has won three trophies on clay this season, could meet third seed Djokovic in the semi-finals, with 2021 finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas drawn in the 20-year-old's quarter. Alcaraz is competing in his third clay-court Grand Slam, having reached the quarterfinals in 2022. The top seed will face a qualifier in the first round before facing 14th seed Cameron Norrie in the fourth round. Fifth seed Tsitsipas, who is in the same division as Felix Auger-Aliassime, might be Alcaraz's quarter-final opponent.

Denis Shapovalov of Canada and Lorenzo Musetti of Italy are also in the top quarter of the draw. Alcaraz might face Shapovalov in the third round, while Musetti, who took Djokovic to five sets in Paris in 2021, is in the same division as Norrie.

Two-time champion Djokovic, who is aiming to win a record 23rd Grand Slam title in Paris, will start against American Aleksandar Kovacevic. The Serbian is in the same section as Hubert Hurkacz, with seventh seed Andrey Rublev a possible quarter-final opponent. Rublev captured the Monte-Carlo title last month and faces Laslo Djere in the first round.

American Ben Shelton is in the same section as Rublev. The 20-year-old Shelton, who reached the quarter-finals at the Australian Open, had never competed on red clay before this year. Shelton will face a tough opening test against Italian Lorenzo Sonego.

Daniil Medvedev, the second seed, anchors the bottom half of the draw. After winning his first clay-court victory last week in Rome, the 27-year-old moved up to No. 2 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings. Medvedev's win in Italy assured that he would be seeded second in Paris, allowing Alcaraz and Djokovic to be placed in the same half.

In the first round, Medvedev will face a qualifier before either Jannik Sinner or two-time semi-finalist Alexander Zverev in the quarter-finals. Sinner, the eighth seed, will face Frenchman Alexandre Muller in the first round, while Zverev will face South African Lloyd Harris. Sinner is 28-7 this season and has reached three tour-level finals, including his second ATP Masters 1000 title match in Miami.