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Tennis

Djokovic backs Federer for French Open challenge

14th April 2019, 19:47 by Tom McGarry

Novak Djokovic feels Roger Federer can win the French Open this year despite his recent self-enforced absences from Roland Garros.

Swiss ace Federer has not competed at the French Open since 2015, preferring instead to skip the clay-court season in order to prolong his long-term future in the game.

However, the 20-time Grand Slam winner has confirmed he will participate in Paris this year, while he will also compete in next month's Madrid Open as part of his preparations for Roland Garros.

Clay has traditionally been Federer's weakest surface, with only one of his Grand Slam titles coming at the French Open, but Djokovic, who has won the last three Slams and is likely to head to Paris as second-favourite behind clay-court specialist Rafael Nadal, believes the world number four can emerge triumphant this year.

Asked if it was realistic for Federer to win the French Open this year, Djokovic told reporters: "I think so.

"I mean, certainly other Slams more than Roland Garros for Roger are, so to say ‑ he has more chance to win other slams than Roland Garros, but he has won Roland Garros in the past.

"He hasn't played it obviously last year or last few years, but, you know, it's hard to speak about Roger's level because it's always there. It's always at its highest."

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Tom McGarry completed his sports journalist degree in 2011,and has since has become an integral part of the editorial and audio team. He is passionate about all things sport, particularly football, and is a lifelong supporter of his hometown club Carlisle United.

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