Like the entire tennis world, Boris Becker is excited about the latest big battle between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.. Two legends are tied for 22 Major crowns, and should be the favorites at the next Roland Garros in June if Nadal recovers and gets to 100%.
Becker chose Rafa over Novak in Paris, backing the Spaniard to chase his fifteenth Parisian title. However, the German placed the Serb just behind the Spaniard, expecting an exciting fight in Paris, London and New York.. Djokovic is in a much better position than Nadal, at the top of men’s tennis and playing at a high level.
On the other hand, Rafa has been dealing with injuries without rest for more than a year, playing last year’s Roland Garros with injections and losing pace after Wimbledon. The Spaniard injured his abdomen during the All England Club, withdrew before the semi-final and has won just five matches since!
Rafa wished for a fresh start in 2023, but that didn’t happen. The veteran lost both meetings at the United Cup and experienced another setback at the Australian Open. Nadal injured his left hip in the second round against Mackenzie McDonald in a 6-4, 6-4, 7-5 loss, his first loss at the Majors since 2016.
Rafa has withdrawn from Doha, Dubai, Indian Wells and Miami and will leave the top 10 for the first time in almost 18 years later this month.
Boris Becker chose Rafael Nadal as the favorite for Roland Garros.
As we already said, Nadal needed injections in his foot with problems to withstand the efforts at Roland Garros last year.
He edged past Novak Djokovic in four sets in the quarterfinals, staged a comeback in the fourth and sealed the deal in the tiebreaker. Rafa led 7-6, 6-6 against Alexander Zverev in the semi-final after a grueling three hours before the German injured his ankle and walked out in tears.
Thus, Nadal advanced to his 14th Roland Garros final and ousted Casper Ruud 6-3, 6-3, 6-0, racking up 11 straight games to lift the 22nd Major trophy. Rafa should be back in action in Monte Carlo in April, hoping for another heavy blow on his beloved clay and a chance to chase notable titles.
«I don’t think Novak will set his sights on the 2024 Paris Olympics and a Golden Slam. He wants to achieve the 23rd Major title before Rafael Nadal and take the record. However, I still believe that Rafa is the favorite at Roland Garros..
Novak is right behind him though, and let’s see what two champions have to offer us,» Boris Becker said.