2017 French Open Will Be Missing Roger Federer,Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova
It is a well-known fact that the 18-time Grand Slam winner is crazy about grass courts. It would not be an exaggeration to say that Federer loves playing at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club as much as Jon Snow loves wielding his ‘Longclaw’. Although Federer broke the hearts of millions by withdrawing from the dustiest Grand Slam on the planet for the second straight year in preparation for Wimbledon, the 35-year-old assured that he is trying to prolong his career by consciously avoiding the taxing clay court season.
The Swiss, who missed the last six months of the 2016 season with a knee injury, is positive that he will compete in Paris next year.
The winner of the first Grand Slam of 2017, Australian Open, Federer, lifted his maiden silver trophy designed and made by Maison Mellerio dits Meller, in 2009.
Roger Federer’s absence will definitely make things easier for nine-time champion Rafael Nadal, who remains unbeaten on clay this season.
Serena Williams, the best female tennis player of this era and one of the world’s most prominent athletes, announced on Twitter in April that she was pregnant and expecting her first child later this year. At the peak of her career, the 35-year-old decided that Grand Slam titles can wait as she promised to be back on the circuit to contest her 24th major in 2018.
The three-time French Open winner (2002, 2013, 2015) was two months pregnant when she won Australian Open in January and broke her tie with Steffi Graf for the most Grand Slam singles titles in the Open era
Williams now ranks behind only Margaret Court’s 24 on the career list.
The American has been single-handedly dominating women’s tennis in recent history and because of her absence, women’s championship at French Open 2017 will be wide open and up for grabs.
Maria Sharapova tasted major success very early in her career. She was a Wimbledon champion and world number one at eighteen. Despite being injury-prone, Sharapova has sustained a long playing career and is still going strong
On 12 March 2016, the Russian announced that she tested positive for a banned substance during the Australian Open 2016 and all hell broke loose.
The two-time French Open winner (2012, 2014) was outlawed for taking meldonium, a medication she had been taking for 10 years within the rules, but that was reclassified as a banned drug.
After serving a 15-month ban, Sharapova is back, determined to salvage her lost pride. She got wild card entries at most of the WTA tournaments but was refused a wild card into the French Open.
Sharapova, who is confident in her integrity, has 310 ranking points to her name, which places her at number 171 and she cannot get a direct entry with such low rankings.
With Serena Williams missing out, French Open 2017 was being considered Sharapova’s tournament of reckoning. Although the 30-year-old is a bit rusty, still she could have provided a stiff competition to her opponents. We cannot deny that Sharapova’s presence adds spark to competitions and all those who have been eagerly waiting for her return will have to wait a little longer