With the French Open drawing towards a close, it’s been another fascinating tournament. We’ve seen no shortage of quality matches, with players like Novak Djokovic, Carlos Alcaraz and Holger Rune producing mesmeric tennis on the biggest stage.
However, for some players, this year’s French Open has brought disappointment in the form of early exits. Many players, who were heavily fancied in the men French Open betting, have sadly had to pack their bags early and start preparing for the grass season sooner than they would have liked. Let’s take a look at five players whose early defeats caught tennis fans off guard.
The most shocking early departure from the French Open was that of Daniil Medvedev. The Russian entered the tournament as the number two seed, and much was expected of him after he claimed his first clay-court title at the Italian Open just a few weeks prior to Roland Garros.
However, the 27-year-old couldn’t even make it past the first round, with Brazilian Thiago Seyboth Wild putting paid to his hopes with an impressive five-set victory.
Jannik Sinner is considered one of the most promising players in the men’s game, and has been a consistent performer at Grand Slams, reaching the quarter-finals at least once in all four majors.
There were high hopes for Sinner this year in the Grand Slams, but his Roland Garros campaign was cut short after a disappointing second-round defeat to Daniel Altmaier. It’s back to the drawing board for Sinner, who will be looking for answers after this early exit.
After reaching the fourth round of the French Open last year, Felix Auger-Aliassime would have been viewing this year’s tournament as a chance to prove himself on clay. However, a disappointing first-round exit at the hands of Fabio Fognini put paid to his hopes for Roland Garros 2023.
Fognini is a tough draw for anyone in the first round, but Auger-Aliassime will have been disappointed to surrender pretty meekly in a straight-sets defeat.
British number one Cameron Norrie has enjoyed a strong clay season, notably beating Carlos Alcaraz in the final of the Rio Open. For that reason, Norrie would have been confident of going far at the French Open.
Unfortunately, Norrie couldn’t get beyond the third round, with young Italian prospect Lorenzo Musetti getting the better of him in straight sets. Norrie will now turn his attention to Wimbledon, where he’ll be hoping to go one better than his semi-final appearance last year.
American Tommy Paul would have entered 2023 hoping to improve his Grand Slam results, having failed to reach a Grand Slam quarter-final so far in his career. His French Open record is particularly disappointing, having failed to get beyond the second round, and that is the hurdle where Paul fell once again, as Chile’s Nicolas Jarry got the better of him.
It’s another disappointment for Paul, who has so far been unable to carry his good form in smaller events into the Grand Slams.