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French Open 2020: The Dark Horses that Could Shake Up the Men’s and Women’s Draw

French Open 2020: The Dark Horses that Could Shake Up the Men’s and Women’s Draw

The Italian Open is over, and fans thoroughly enjoyed watching the event. They are now looking forward to the next tournament that is on the horizon – the French Open. It will be the last Grand Slam of 2020 and will begin on September 27.

The event is right around the corner and the question on everybody’s mind is, who will win the title? Much like with any event, there are always some favorites and in this case, it is Rafael Nadal and Simona Halep.

Rafa has won the event 12 times, and he is the obvious choice for the title. On the women’s side, many would pick World No. 2 Halep as she is in terrific form. She just won the Italian Open and in addition to that, she is also a former champion at the Parisian Slam.

These two players seem to have the best shot at winning the title. However, there are others who could challenge them and potentially steal the prize. Here are some of those dark horses.

Dark horses on the men’s side of the French Open 2020

Diego Schwartzman

Rafael Nadal
Tennis – ATP Masters 1000 – Italian Open – Foro Italico, Rome, Italy – September 19, 2020 Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman celebrates after winning his quarter-final match against Spain’s Rafael Nadal Pool via REUTERS/Riccardo Antimiani

The Argentine recently showed his clay-court prowess when he played the Italian Open. He managed to beat Rafa on clay, which is one of the hardest things to do, and ended up reaching the final. It was his first Masters 1000 Final, but he lost to Novak Djokovic. Nevertheless, Schwartzman played some amazing tennis and that will give him a confidence boost when he plays in Paris.

Denis Shapovalov

The Canadian star has been playing good tennis for a couple of years now. However, at the Italian Open, he took his game to the next level. He beat Grigor Dimitrov and made it to the semi-finals where he lost to Schwartzman in a three-hour thriller which ended in the third-set tie break. It was unfortunate for him that he lost, but he can still pose a challenge at the French Open.

Denis Shapovalov at Italian Open 2020
Tennis – ATP Masters 1000 – Italian Open – Foro Italico, Rome, Italy – Canada’s Denis Shapovalov in action during his third round match against France’s Ugo Humbert Pool via REUTERS/Clive Brunskill

Stan Wawrinka

No one can ever count Wawrinka out! He has won three Grand Slams and one of those came in Paris back in 2015. But Wawrinka hasn’t been playing his best tennis over the last couple of years due to injuries. However, the Swiss star has always excelled at playing at his best when he needs to, and he could very well do that at Roland Garros this year.

Dark horses on the women’s side of the French Open 2020

Garbine Muguruza

Through 2018 and 2019, Garbine Muguruza struggled to find her form, but finally found it this year. At the start of 2020, she reached the Australian Open final. While she lost there to Sofia Kenin, it was a great comeback nonetheless. If she plays well, she just might win her third Grand Slam when she plays in Paris next week.

Garbine Muguruza in action against Coco Gauff at the 2020 Italian Open
Tennis – WTA Premier 5 – Italian Open – Foro Italico, Rome, Italy – September 17, 2020 Spain’s Garbine Muguruza in action during her second round match against Cori Gauff of the U.S. Pool via REUTERS/Clive Brunskill

Victoria Azarenka

The Belarusian had a terrible run of form from 2013 to 19. However, all of that changed in 2020 as she made a stunning comeback. She won the Cincinnati Open and also reached the final of the US Open. She stands a good chance at the French Open and could win her first title there.

Victoria Azarenka in action at Italian Open 2020
Tennis – WTA Premier 5 – Italian Open – Foro Italico, Rome, Italy – September 19, 2020 Belarus’ Victoria Azarenka in action during her quarter final against Spain’s Garbine Muguruza Pool via REUTERS/Riccardo Antimiani

Coco Gauff

Last but certainly not the least is the 16-year-old Coco Gauff. Despite her young age, Coco has managed to beat tennis legends like Venus Williams. While she hasn’t won her first Grand Slam as yet, she might be able to change that on the Parisian clay.

Coco Gauff and Rafael Nadal
Tennis – WTA Premier 5 – Italian Open – Foro Italico, Rome, Italy – September 16, 2020 Coco Gauff of the U.S. in action during the Women’s doubles Pool via REUTERS/Clive Brunskill

The competition at the French Open has been looking really good and fans can expect an entertaining tournament.

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