2011 French Open

French Open 2011: Power Ranking Top 10 Men in Field

Carrie DunnAnalyst IIMay 23, 2011

French Open 2011: Power Ranking Top 10 Men in Field

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    PARIS - JUNE 06:  Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates with the trophy after winning the men's singles final match between Rafael Nadal of Spain and Robin Soderling of Sweden on day fifteen of the French Open at Roland Garros on June 6, 2010 in Paris, France.
    Julian Finney/Getty Images

    The seedings at Roland Garros are one thing, and the bookies' odds are another—but you can't always tell who'll succeed at a Grand Slam based on statistics. 

    So, here are my predictions for how the field will pan out on the men's side of the draw, picking the 10 most likely men to win.

10. Sam Querrey

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    ROME, ITALY - MAY 11:  Sam Querrey of USA plays a forehand return during his second round match against Nicolas Almagro of Spain during day four of the Internazionali BNL d'Italia at the Foro Italico Tennis Centreon May 11, 2011 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by
    Alex Livesey/Getty Images

    I expect Sam Querrey to make a good run this year. He has a tough first match against Philipp Kohlschreiber, but he has the ability to power through the draw.

9. David Ferrer

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    MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 03:  David Ferrer of Spain in action in his match against Adrian Mannarino of France during day four of the Mutua Madrilena Madrid Open Tennis on May 3, 2011 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
    Julian Finney/Getty Images

    The TV commentators have been calling him the "nearly man," and he has generally lived up to it. An impressive first-round win against Jarko Nieminen bodes well.

8. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

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    ROME, ITALY - MAY 11: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France  plays a backhand during his second round match against Roger Federer of Switzerland during day four of the Internazoinali BNL D'Italia at the Foro Italico Tennis Centre on May 11, 2011 in Rome, Italy.  (
    Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

    The Frenchman is on home soil (well, home clay) and has made it into the seedings, ranked at No. 17.

    France has high hopes for him.

7. Tomas Berdych

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    ROME, ITALY - MAY 13:  Tomas Berdych of Czech Republic serves during his quarter final match against Richard Gasquet of France during day six of the Internazoinali BNL D'Italia at the Foro Italico Tennis Centre  on May 13, 2011 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by
    Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

    Berdych's first-round matchup against Stephane Robert, a Frenchman, will be a tricky one, but the second round should prove easier for the No. 6 seed.

    He made the semifinals last year. 

6. Juan Martin Del Potro

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    MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 03:  Juan Martin Del Potro of Argentina plays a forehand in his match against Mikhail Youzhny of Russia during day four of the Mutua Madrilena Madrid Open Tennis on May 3, 2011 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
    Julian Finney/Getty Images

    It might be an optimistic prediction, but I really rate the big Argentinian.

    He's been horribly unlucky with injuries since his wonderful U.S. Open win, but he's returning to Roland Garros, and I expect him to prove doubters wrong.

5. Robin Soderling

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    MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 06:  Robin Soderling of Sweden follows a high ball in his match against Roger Federer of Switzerland during day seven of the Mutua Madrilena Madrid Open Tennis on May 6, 2011 in Madrid, Spain. Federer won the match in straight sets.  (
    Jasper Juinen/Getty Images

    Last year's runner-up enters the tournament as the No 5 seed and is in the same half of the draw as Rafael Nadal, the man who beat him in 2010.

    Still, he'll hope to make good progress. There's no reason why he shouldn't do as well as he did 12 months ago.

4. Roger Federer

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    ROME, ITALY - MAY 12:  Roger Federer of Switzerland serves during his third round match against Richard Gasquet of France during day five of the Internazionali BNL d'Italia at the Foro Italico Tennis Centre on May 12, 2011 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by Alex
    Alex Livesey/Getty Images

    Who'd have thought I'd have ranked Federer as low as No. 4?

    His form is not looking good, though, and clay has always been his least favorite surface.

    He'll put in some amazing performances, of course, and look like he's going to challenge, but I don't see him reaching the final.

3. Andy Murray

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    PARIS, FRANCE - MAY 22:  Andy Murray of Great Britain plays a forehand during a practice session on day one of the French Open at Roland Garros on May 22, 2011 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
    Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

    With a topsy-turvy 2011 for Murray so far, he served for the match in Rome against Novak Djokovic last week, but he just couldn't find his killer instinct.

    He'll be fired up to show he has what it takes to be a genuine champion.

2. Novak Djokovic

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    ROME, ITALY - MAY 15:  Novak Djokovic of Serbia in action during the final against Rafael Nadal of Spain during day eight of the Internazoinali BNL D'Italia at the Foro Italico Tennis Centre on May 15, 2011 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty
    Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

    His unbeaten streak is spectacular.

    Astounding as he's been though, I just don't see Rafael Nadal letting go of his beloved French Open title that easily. 

1. Rafael Nadal

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    ROME, ITALY - MAY 15:  Rafael Nadal of Spain in action during the final against Novak Djokovic of Serbia during day eight of the Internazoinali BNL D'Italia at the Foro Italico Tennis Centre on May 15, 2011 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty
    Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

    If Nadal retains his trophy this year, it'll be one of his most impressive victories ever, as his rivals have stepped up their game on clay to push him ever harder. He'll need to stay fit, stay focused and avoid the heat viruses he seems to be prone to.

    Only then can we expect to see him biting that trophy.

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