Novak Djokovic begins his quest for a second French Open title against Mikael Ymer of Sweden on Tuesday. Djokovic vs…
Novak Djokovic begins his quest for a second French Open title against Mikael Ymer of Sweden on Tuesday.
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Djokovic vs Ymer is live from Roland Garros on Tuesday 29 September, time TBC
Top seed Novak Djokovic is one of the last to get going at the 2020 French Open and brings a 31-1 record this season, as well as an unbeaten record in first-round matches at Roland Garros, into Tuesday’s clash with Mikael Ymer.
The Rome Masters champion is yet to lose a completed match this season and will be looking for an efficient win in this year’s unusual conditions as he takes on Ymer, a Swedish clay-courter yet to win a set against a top-10 player.
Read on for our preview, predictions and live streaming information.
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Djokovic vs Ymer: Head-to-head
This will be the first meeting between Novak Djokovic and Mikael Ymer.
Djokovic vs Ymer: Preview
Novak Djokovic aims to follow fellow tournament favourites Rafael Nadal and Dominic Thiem into the second round – and to do so with as little energy expended as possible – as he takes on Mikael Ymer on Tuesday.
Djokovic has never lost a first-round match at the French Open and is on a 56-match winning streak in first-round matches at Grand Slam level, so the challenge facing Ymer is steep.
Much of the talk during the first two days at Roland Garros has been about the conditions at this unusual autumn edition of the French Open, where a new roof on Court Philippe-Chatrier, rain, wind and cold weather in autumnal Paris and new balls which seem to be challenging players to generate pace and spin have all contributed to some surprising results.
How will Djokovic enjoy these new conditions? The consensus seems to be that it’s trickier to slide, which benefits players who maybe don’t move like traditional clay-courters, but Djokovic is adept at sliding even on a slow hard court (which it is reportedly playing like) for one thing – and the days when he depended on defense to win points are gone; his serve and relentlessly precise groundstrokes should be very effective on these courts.
Djokovic did not play anything like his best tennis at the Rome Masters, nor really in ‘Cincinnati’ or New York prior to his shock default, but it didn’t matter; he still picked up two more Masters 1000 Series titles and stayed unbeaten in completed matches.
Will we see Djokovic’s best tennis come out at the French Open? Perhaps, but he’s not going to need it on Thursday. Ymer, the younger of the Swedish brothers at 22, broke into the top 100 late in 2019 after winning the Orleans Challenger, his third Challenger title of the season (he also reached two finals). His previous activity on the ATP Tour has mainly been confined to qualifying matches; in 2020 he’s been working on transitioning to main-draw ATP Tour success, and has claimed wins over Jannik Sinner, Frances Tiafoe and Richard Gasquet, but has yet to win back-to-back main-draw matches and failed to qualify for the last four tournaments he attempted, including Rome and Hamburg (losing to Facundo Bagnis and Tennys Sandgren respectively).
Ymer has faced two top-10 players, and failed to get a set from either. Djokovic will be easing his way into the tournament, but even so should be able to record a very one-sided victory.