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French Open preview and tips: Carlos Alcaraz on the hunt and Iga Swiatek looking unbeatable

Rafael Nadal's absence from the French Open clears the way for the new generation of stars to make a name in the men's game and Iga Swiatek is looking very strong in the women's draw.

When and where

The first round in both the men's and women's events starts on Sunday, 28 May, with the final of the women's event on Saturday, June 10, while the men's event will conclude on Sunday, 11 June.

Talking points

Men's draw

There isn't much to separate the top three players in the world: Carlos Alcaraz, Daniil Medvedev and Novak Djokovic are the favourites heading into the tournament.
Two-time winner and the defending champion, Djokovic remains the man to beat on the ATP Tour despite going to Roland Garros as world No 3. Alcaraz is the new star of the men's circuit and seems destined to take over the mantle from the Serbian as the top dog in most events.
Meanwhile, Medvedev will be confident of his chances after winning in Rome last week and moving up to second in the rankings, despite not having a great record in France.
It feels strange not having the 14-time champion Rafael Nadal at the event but age is catching up with the Spaniard and he has been ruled out with a hip injury and will miss the French Open for the first time since 2004.
Stefanos Tsitsipas is the most likely contender outside the top three that could upset the proverbial apple cart.
Other players who could go far in the tournament include Jannik Sinner, Holger Rune, Casper Ruud, and Andrey Rublev.

Women's draw

Already a two-time winner at Roland Garros and the defending champion, Iga Swiatek is the undoubted player to beat in the women's event. It would be a massive upset for the books if the Pole doesn't walk away with the title once again.
The player likely to offer Swiatek the stiffest resistance is Aryna Sabalenka. Not only is the Belarusian the world number two, she already has a win over Swiatek on clay earlier this month when they clashed in the final of the Madrid Open.

A force to be reckoned with on the faster courts, Sabalenka has never made it past the third round in Paris and would have to have a tournament to remember if she were to win it.

Those two aside, there is little to choose between Paula Badosa, Barbora Krejcikova, Elena Rybakina, Ons Jabeur, Jessica Pegula and Jelena Ostapenko going into the year's second grand slam event.

Dark horses

In the men's draw, Sinner is one to watch for. Ever-improving, the 21-year-old world number eight has already been compared to both Djokovic and Roger Federer, so must be doing something right.
Winning the event is probably a step too far at this stage of his career but don't be surprised if he makes a run deep into the tournament.
In women's event, Jabeur has a great chance. She isn't one of the obvious favourites but one of the few players on the WTA Tour that, when one song, can give Swiatek a run for her money. If she catches fire, she's very hot.


Alcaraz will win the French Open to announce to the world that the new generation of men's players has come of age.
Meanwhile, Swiatek will coast through the rounds and hardly break a sweat and is a decent shout to win the tournament without dropping a set.
Who plays her in the final? Jabeur or Ostapenko, most likely, with Sabalenka not making it past the Round of 16.

Suggested bets

Carlos Alcaraz to win the men's 2023 French Open title

Stefanos Tsitsipas to win the men's 2023 French Open title

Iga Swiatek to win the 2023 French Open without dropping a set

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