Like the entire tennis world, Boris Becker is excited about the ultimate Major battle between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. Two legends are tied on 22 Major crowns, and they should be the favorites at the upcoming Roland Garros in June if Nadal recovers and get to 100%.
Becker picked Rafa above Novak in Paris, backing the Spaniard to chase his 15th Parisian title. However, the German placed the Serb right behind the Spaniard, expecting a thrilling fight in Paris, London and New York. Djokovic is in a much better position than Nadal, standing at the top of men’s tennis and playing at a high level.
On the other hand, Rafa has been dealing with injuries without a break for over a year, playing the last year’s Roland Garros with injections and losing pace after Wimbledon. The Spaniard injured his abdominal during the All England Club, withdrawing ahead of the semi-final and winning only five matches since!
Rafa wished for a fresh start in 2023, but that did not happen. The veteran lost both encounters 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 defeat, his earliest at Majors since 2016.
Rafa withdrew 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 picked Rafael Nadal as the Roland Garros favorite.
As we already said, Nadal needed injections in his troubled foot to endure the efforts at the last year’s Roland Garros.
He ousted Novak Djokovic in four sets in the quarter-final, performing a comeback in the fourth and sealing the deal in the tie break. Rafa led 7-6, 6-6 against Alexander Zverev in the semi-final after grueling three hours before the German hurt his ankle and retired in tears.
Thus, Nadal moved into his 14th Roland Garros final and ousted Casper Ruud 6-3, 6-3, 6-0, rattling off 11 straight games to lift the 22nd Major trophy. Rafa should return to action in Monte Carlo in April, hoping for another strong swing on his beloved clay and a chance to seek notable titles.
“I do not think that Novak set his goal at the 2024 Paris Olympics and a Golden Slam. He wants to achieve the 23rd Major title before Rafael Nadal and clinch the record. However, I still believe Rafa is the favorite at Roland Garros.
However, Novak is right behind him, and let’s see what two champions will deliver for us,” Boris Becker said.