Novak Djokovic - Roland Garros 2022

Novak Djokovic ‘probably the most disappointed’ about Rafael Nadal’s French Open absence

Novak Djokovic was ‘probably the most disappointed player’ after hearing Rafael Nadal’s announcement that he would not be playing Roland Garros for the first time since 2004, according to former No.1 Mats Wilander.

Djokovic will be aiming to lead the Grand Slam record books for the first time in his career when he plays at Roland Garros this year, as he looks to win his 23rd major title in Paris.

Back in February, Djokovic revealed that he would like to meet Nadal in the Roland Garros final with history on the line.

“I would like to meet in the Roland Garros final, if I could choose, I believe we would both sign it now,” claimed the Serb. “Nadal has been the biggest rival and probably will remain the biggest rival I ever had in my career.”

This has supported Wilander’s claims that Djokovic would be the most disappointed player in the entire draw after hearing the Spaniard’s announcement, “I think that in a way, you’re disappointed maybe more than anything that you don’t get to play Rafa somewhere.”

Wilander continued, “And I would think for Novak Djokovic, he’s most probably the most disappointed player in the whole tournament. Because surely he would like to win his 23rd – his third French Open – by beating Rafa Nadal along the way.”

If Djokovic is to win his 23rd major title in the French capital he will have to do it the hard way, as the No.3 has been placed in the same half as No.1 Carlos Alcaraz and 2021 finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas.

The 36-year-old faces American Aleksandar Kovacevic, who is making his Grand Slam debut in Paris, in his opening match.

Novak Djokovic and his 22 Grand Slam titles

Djokovic’s first Grand Slam title dates back to 2008, and since then he has continued to take the major tournament’s by storm.

Here are all of the Serb’s major titles to date:

  1. Australian Open (2008)
  2. Australian Open (2011)
  3. Wimbledon (2011)
  4. US Open (2011)
  5. Australian Open (2012)
  6. Australian Open (2013)
  7. Wimbledon (2014)
  8. Australian Open (2015)
  9. Wimbledon (2015)
  10. US Open (2015)
  11. Australian Open (2016)
  12. Roland Garros (2016)
  13. Wimbledon (2018)
  14. US Open (2018)
  15. Australian Open (2019)
  16. Wimbledon (2019)
  17. Australian Open (2020)
  18. Australian Open (2021)
  19. Roland Garros (2021)
  20. Wimbledon (2021)
  21. Wimbledon (2022)
  22. Australian Open (2023)

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.