French Open R3 previews and picks: Federer vs. Dzumhur, Tsonga vs. Andujar

FedRoger Federer and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga will aim for spots in the French Open fourth round when they take the court on Friday. They are set for respective meetings with Damir Dzumhur and Pablo Andujar.

Damir Dzumhur vs. (2) Roger Federer

Federer and Dzumhur will be going head-to-head for the first time in their careers when they clash in round three of the French Open on Friday. Needless to say it has already been an outstanding tournament for Dzumhur, who is through to the last 32 of a major for just the second time in his career (2014 Australian Open). The 88th-ranked Bosnian has capitalized on a favorable draw, getting a retirement from Mikhail Youzhny before beating Marcos Baghdatis in four sets.

This, of course, where a friendly road through Paris ends. An in-form Federer is 27-5 for his 2015 campaign following routine wins at Roland Garros over fellow veterans Alejandro Falla and Marcel Granollers. The world No. 2, who won this tournament in 2009, recently captured a title in Istanbul and finished runner-up to Novak Djokovic in Rome. He should put a swift end to Dzumhur’s run.

Pick: Federer in 3 losing 8-10 games

(14) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga vs. Pablo Andujar

Tsonga has endured an injury-plagued 2014 campaign, but to say his fortnight in Paris has gotten off to a flying start would be an understatement. The crowd favorite has treated the French Open faithful to straight-set beatdowns of Christian Lindell and Dudi Sela. While Tsonga is still just 8-5 on the season, he seems reinvigorated on the big stage–especially after missing the Australian Open.

Next up for the world No. 15 on Friday is a second-ever meeting with Andujar. Their only previous encounter came two season ago on the hard courts of Shanghai, where Tsonga cruised 6-3, 6-2. It should be more of a fair fight on clay even though Tsonga has home-court advantage in France. Andujar caught a major break in his trek to the Roland Garros third round. The 42nd-ranked Spaniard trailed Philipp Kohlschreiber 4-2 in the fifth set on Wednesday evening and had no momentum of any kind, having already blown a two-set advantage. But play was suspended due to darkness and Andujar came back out on Thursday to promptly win four consecutive games. Tsonga will not be as generous as the proverbial tennis gods.

Pick: Tsonga in 3 with no tiebreakers

56 Comments on French Open R3 previews and picks: Federer vs. Dzumhur, Tsonga vs. Andujar

    • @ritbe
      You can say that again. Yawnfest all the way. Even the gorgeous Gilles is sending me to sleep by playing so poorly he makes Mahut look quite good…………….ZZZzzzzzzz

  1. Dzumhur said that playing Federer, his idol, is a dream come true.

    He might as well be idolizing him by sitting in the stands with the rest of the RG crowd as there are plenty of empty seats for all players in France no matter what any-bot-y says.

    • Really, Fed should be embarrassed at his draw. No, he won’t, he’ll be laughing all the way to the bank and final………

      • In rf’s case, seems to me, having his spoken or even unspoken wishes acted upon by the decision makers is not cause for any raucus in the media, any outcry by fellow atp pros,pundits or fans, even where the wishes / treatment may be vastly unfair to other players.

        Therefore we might as well ask, WHAT would be the reaction from fellow pros, rf himself, pundits and fans had an umpire that previously was too hard on him then asked him to change shorts in public>

        And we might as well ask, WHY does roger _deserve_ numerous (almost constant) unfairly advantageous draws (when it matters), schedules, etc.?

        Just askin’ 🙂

      • ^^That, plus also the fact that Rafa is seriously threatening Fed’s GOAT status. When (not if) Rafa wins La Decima, Fed’s GOAT status looks decidedly iffy, no? Regardless of him having more Slams that Rafa at this point……

      • Which people and which majority? Just so we are clear… the tournament owners and advertisers who make much profit from these games? The pundits? The fans?

        If the majority rules, it would be nice, no? :-), if at least every one would admit to the relentless unfairness, and while we’re at it, admit the other side to the Bernandes’ case, i.e. Carlos’ behaviour.

      • One of the most damning results of years of unfairly chosen unfairness…. and perhaps the most taboo topic in perceptions of rg and communications about him is that…

        (beware, we may have to put a ban on speaking on you if you read the following…)

        had there been NO rigging (chosing) of draws and preferential treatment AT ALL in scheduling etc over the last, say, 8 years … the slam count of one rg would VERY likely be lower. 16, perhaps 15.

        (you’ve been warned: do not dare speak openly of this on peril of banishment from various websites and worse)

      • Agreed ritb, part of the whole sum indeed.

        Yes, chloro, all of the above. But I don’t subscribe that majority rules is nice in all cases (such as federazzi era). They will admit to nothing they don’t have to.

        (that type of talk has got me banned on the two other sites I’ve posted on – one has to be more… creative shall we say).

      • agreed on all, ritb and hawkeye 🙂
        majority rules is nice in all cases? of course it is not, was just my bit of hue-mourh 🙂

  2. Bernardes had been on Rafa’s case for a long time. The shorts incident was the last straw.

    The umpires make a lot of mistakes with line calls and more but usually just shrug their shoulders saying they didn’t see what happened etc. and no sanction is taken against them ever. I’m not into football but if a referee makes those sort of mistakes they have to explain themselves.

  3. in football they just say “sorry, I made a mistake but I just didn’t see it” and nothing happens, the result stays. (Some of the referees don’t even admit making blatant “mistakes”). We’ve recently learned that FIFA rigged matches during Korea’s world cup in 2002).. and that’s just the beginning of what they will find.. football is much worse than tennis.

  4. Good article…

    But Cédric Pioline, the former French star who played in Courier’s era in the 1990s and early 2000s, said that the situation “doesn’t surprise me at all.”
    Pioline said he had requested not to be assigned to a specific chair umpire during his career. “What surprises me in the case of Nadal is that the word got out,” Pioline said.
    The rules do not prohibit requests like Nadal’s and, despite Courier’s surprise, such requests are not without precedent. Nor are they guaranteed to succeed.
    “It is not chair umpire ~CHECK~ la carte, definitely not,” Stefan Fransson, the French Open tournament referee, said in an interview Thursday. “There is the perception sometimes that if the player just says, ‘I don’t want an umpire,’ then it happens. That is not true, because if they say they don’t want this official then we find out why they don’t think they should have him, and we look into why he thinks so. We might agree. We might disagree.”


    • Look, if it had been Novak or Fed who had requested Bernardes not officiate at their matches after publicly humiliating them, they would be feted, not excoriated.

      • It would not be discussed much at all in the media and that’s that. Would not become a storm in a teacup.

        For example, how is it the Bernardes’ previous experience with rafa, prior to shortsgate, is not mentioned in the current articles? How come any details that make Bernardes look very unreasonable are either not mentioned or downplayed? How come a whole spin is added to this tiny story…. just now, months later, just before and during Rolland Garros?

        Sorry, Ricky, I don’t by your ‘no’ in this case.

  5. Anyone else notice Fed’s belly-pouch has gone? His middle’s now flat as a frying pan. Maybe he’s also jumped on the gluten free diet bandwagon….

    • ^^So, Fed makes a security “request” and they call in the extras from The Matrix Re-loaded. Rafa makes a normal umpiring “request” and they polish up the guillotine.

  6. RT @linzsports: “HAHAHAHAHA Look at all those security guys around Federer. That’s incredible. There were 15 of them I think.”

  7. Today on British tv after Fed had played we were treated to a long disquisition on Fed’s greatness (no mention of the quality of his opponents of course, or rather the lack of it) where Courier opined that Fed was now BIGGER THAN THE SPORT!! (thought I’d just emphasize that by putting it in capitals) although good old modest Fed himself would of course never say that. Am sure good old modest Fed thinks it and these sort of comments are why every whim of his is granted…..

    • rf… the SUN king…. the one mortal who fit the space starting in the early 2000’s that fit the space in psyche of tennis pundits and fans that turned him into
      a star
      a symbol
      a hero
      a mythical personage
      an over-exaggerated image
      an icon
      a clear ring reminiscent closely of an archetype

      to the point that much objectivity around him was shot, lost, broken, gone for well over 10 years now

      so there is this unusually large gap between the reality and the perception, between the greatness of his tennis (which is there, for sure) and the much larger greatness as perceived by the multitudes of pundits and others

      a star so bright
      I like to call him the SUN king

      (Compared to whom John Lennon was humility incarnate 🙂

      • media descriptions of Fed go way beyond the great player currency…
        instead he’s an abstraction….a white knight figure….
        I also read one extraordinary Mills and Boons piece in which the female writer used phrases like ‘ his forehand like a mountain stream’ ‘like an eagle’ and so on….hilarious stuff..

      • such imagery (dancing in the court like a ballet dancer, mountain stream, eagle, the touch of an angel, the movement that subtly careses the strings of the aeolean harp, a vision of perfect beauty), ok, I made a few of those up, are clear signs as you know that people are projecting all manner of their own imagery and perhaps some collective imagery onto a mere mortal …

        this is just like falling head over heels for someone… for some it’s been a political party or a political leader… an ideology… sometimes a whole throng falls head over heels together…

        here for one that is adept at returning a fast moving yellow ball to the other side of the net in some twenty different ways, over and over, for many years…which perhaps beats spending half your life wacking a tiny white ball at a great distance towards a little hole in a manicured expanse of grass.

      • not an expert but I think mirroring is when you imitate the behaviour of someone, esp someone you respect or like

        this is projecting: your own ideals, your views, desires, unfulfilled dreams, and whatnot onto someone else who may or may not resemble the image (the perception) you have of them

      • The Bible according to St. Federazzi….

        Federer as Religious Experience
        Published: August 20, 2006

        “Almost anyone who loves tennis and follows the men’s tour on television has, over the last few years, had what might be termed Federer Moments. These are times, as you watch the young Swiss play, when the jaw drops and eyes protrude and sounds are made that bring spouses in from other rooms to see if you’re O.K.

        The Moments are more intense if you’ve played enough tennis to understand the impossibility of what you just saw him do”

        Click on the link below for further nausea…

      • more things to compare Fed’s forehand to: the Higgs Boson otherwise known as the God particle; the Monalisa, the birth of a new star, nuclear fission, a skylark, a nightingale, the sound of the waves, the infinity of the desert……

      • Generally David Foster Wallace was a very bright, acutely perceptive writer. But that does not mean he was immune to projecting. (Neither am mere I, I just have better taste in male tennis players :-).

      • amy: the Higgs Boson 🙂 … at least we finally found it and observed it … who knew? we were supposed to look on the tennis courts !

      • haha chloro, maybe we will also see that much searched for particle – the graviton – central to string theory. better ring up the Rutherford laboratory and tell them where to look….

      • haha, ‘string’ theory has resonance here, and the graviton: is that for the Sun King and all his gravitas (for all his out of world achievements in flying, shaman-like, he has gravitas too: Lindt gravitas, Rolex gravitas to name but two), or is that the gravitas of the construction worker and all his heaviness?

      • There are media makers who are doing whatever to put Fed on a pedestal and rescue him. In 2012 at Roland Garros, Fed screamed ‘Shut up!’ after he hit the ball into the net and the spectators cheered on his opponent (Delpo). Two years later, Mr.Tignor made up a fake story that Fed screamed at the crowd because he was distracted “by their oohs and aahs” (i.e. because of their worship!!!). 😆

  8. The antipathy towards Rafa dates back to his first appearance at RG. Having dispatched Sebastian Grosjean the crowd ‘darling’ in R3 he went on to humiliate the world No1 by sweeping him to one side before going on to win his first grand slam. However it was Guy Forget who spearheaded the campaign to denigrate Rafa when he announced (I paraphrase) “we don’t want construction workers here at Roland Garros’. I’m not excusing the appalling behaviour of the French crowd at times but they have been fed a diet of negativity and unfavourable comments via the press from the outset of his career.

    The incident of a fan managing to breach security to get a selfie with RF should never have happened but pales into insignificance compared with the demonstrator carrying a lighted flare who ran amok in the middle of Rafa’s match last year and came within a few feet of him. The 15-man posse of guards now surrounding Federer is simply window dressing designed to appease the Great One and, as already pointed out above, just another example of how his every whim is pandered to.


    • As one Dan Martin would say, reflagged ed’s last paragraph on R-X.

      (Hope is ok with you, ed, but that was just too peRFect that I could’t resist and besides all’s fair in federazzi war, for sure,no?)

    • ed,

      I think you summarized the history of the bad blood towards Rafa at RG quite well. Guy Forget and his big mouth didn’t help!

      When I was watching the tennis earlier today, they did show Fed being escorted to the court with that phalanx of bodyguards all protecting the mighty one! I actually started laughing so hard that I couldn’t stop! This wasn’t in real time, they were merely showing what happened earlier in the day.

      Keeping it real, that fan should never have been allowed to run on court to get a selfie with Fed. I remember all too well the horror of a crazed fan sticking a knife into Monica Seles’ back. We never thought of tennis players as being at all vulnerable back then. But it’s something that should not be forgotten. Fortunately, this fan meant no harm.

      But as you said so well, it does pale in importance to what happened in the final two years ago when some lunatic brought a lighted flare onto the court. In that case, Rafa could have been in imminent danger. I remember security running out on court to protect him as they put out the fire from the flare. That was a serious breach of security in which the safety of Rafa was jeopardized.

      That many guards surrounding his highness, was excessive and unnecessary. But I guess when Fed speaks, the people in charge listen! Is there any doubt after seeing this as to what would have happened if Bernardes treated Fed the way he treated Rafa?

      I think not!

  9. @NNY

    The reality is no matter how good the security there will always be the lone nutter at large – as tragically demonstrated throughout history. In the Federer case, assigning a couple of highly trained personal bodyguards would be a far more effective way of protecting him than the ludicrous posse accompanying him to the court.


  10. @Hawkeye.
    I particularly like the theory being promulgated on another site that RG are taking the piss out of Roger. You want protection, we’ll give it to you. Unfortunately the French don’t do that brand of humour.

  11. Fed is making too much of this selfie. Nadal also had the same experience at the USO 2009 and didn’t blow it out of all proportion.

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