The men’s side of the 2016 French Open will look a lot different than it has always looked in the recent years because of several reasons. The biggest is the fact that Roger Federer is not participating in the tournament, pulling out of Roland Garros for the first time since 1998. It’s also the first time he’ll miss any Grand Slam since the 1999 U.S. Open. He had played in a record-setting 65 consecutive Grand Slam tournaments.
Federer last missed a Grand Slam when Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi were the top-ranked players in the world. The third-seeded player has dealt with injuries all year and would have been the third seed had he been able to play in this tournament.
So, we clearly won’t be getting to see any Federer action and yes, a lot of fans will miss his winner shots this year.
Stan Wawrinka is the defending champion, while Novak Djokovic, the man who downed Nadal in the quarterfinals last year, is the top seed for the tournament.
This is the only grand slam missing from the world No.1 Novak Djokovic’s glittering CV. Djokovic needs a French Open title to be considered one of the game’s all-time greats. He’s had plenty of success on clay, but taking home the championship at Roland Garros has consistently escaped him. The world No. 1 has come up empty in 12 previous trips, finishing as runner-up in three of the last four years. He finally looked to have vanquished his curse last year after besting Rafael Nadal in the quarterfinals, but then fell to Stan Wawrinka in a stunning upset in the final.
While in the Women’s category, Serena Williams is the name which has dominated the category over the years. She hasn’t won a major in 10 months, but Williams is coming off her first win of the year at the Italian Open. The defending French Open champion did not have an easy go in 2015, overcoming illness and determined challengers to win her 20th Grand Slam title. The French Open is the one Grand Slam Williams hasn’t won back to back, and she’ll be battling a bit of extra fatigue as she’s also slated to play doubles with her sister, Venus.
A French Open victory would be Williams’ 22nd singles Grand Slam, tying her with Steffi Graf for the most singles Slam titles of all time and two away from Margaret Court’s 24.
It is yet to be experienced, who will emerge at the end of this clash of titans . Everyone has a reason to win, to fight, to conquer for this title but it will be in the last week of June, when we get to witness the players who will be bagging this Grand Slam like a boss.