5 tennis champions who have never won Roland-Garros

There is no shortage of champions in the world of tennis. However, some big names in the field have never won Roland-Garros.

Federer, Nadal, Djokovic, Williams… if these big names are known to everyone for their Grand Slam victory, it is interesting to look at the forgotten people of Roland-Garros, who have never been able to touch this prestigious title.

1 – David Ferrer and his fine track record as a tennis champion

This great player had everything going for him. With a very high level of record, with a total of 27 titles, plus three Davis Cups, a final at the Masters in 2007 and a place of world number three to his favorite.

He began his professional career in 2000 and ended it in 2019. During the 2012 season, he retained his title in Auckland and Acapulco, and reached the quarter-finals at the Australian Open. At the end of the season, with a title in Valencia in Spain, the Spaniard achieved the best performance of his career the following week by winning his first Masters 1000 of his career at Paris-Bercy by overcoming Jerzy Janowicz.

The Spaniard reached a Grand Slam final, that of Roland-Garros 2013, against Nadal. He bows in three setskeeping him away from the Grand Slam champion title.

2 – Tom Okker, THE tennis champion without a Grand Slam

This Dutch tennis player began his career in 1961. He quickly established himself among the best. It is he who holds, in the Open era, the honorary title of most successful player never to win a Grand Slam : 35 listed by the ATP, including the very glorious tournament in Rome in 1968.

That same year, he reached his best ranking as world number three, but lost a hard-fought US Open final to Ashe (14-12, 5-7, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3), his greatest opportunity. He then played in three more major semi-finals, each time being beaten by the eventual winner. He failed against Valer at the 1969 Roland-Garros, against Rosewall at the 1971 Australian Open, against Smith at the 1971 US Open and finally at Wimbledon 1978 against Borg, at the age of 34.

His exemplary career and his play earned him the nickname “The Flying Dutchman” and assured him a place among tennis legends.

3 – Dinara Safina, the sultry one

She is one of the Russian beasts. With excellent serving and daring groundstrokes, she made her mark by reaching three Major finals: two in Paris and one in Melbourne. During his career, she won twelve trophies and also made the semi-finals of Wimbledon and the US Open.

Dinara Safina during the final of the Australian Open, against Serena Williams, in 2009.

Beaten by Ana Ivanovic in the final of the 2008 Roland-Garros then by Serena Williams in the final of the 2009 Australian Open, it was during this same year that Safina had her best chance of triumph, four months later. late. It was during the Roland-Garros final in 2009 against Kuznetsova that the Russian lost, so close to the goal.

SO ranked number 1 in the world when she arrived in Paris, she only dropped five games. And, although Kuznetsova won the title in 2004, many saw Safina as the favorite. Unfortunately for her, the player commits the irreparable: a double fault on match point.

4 – Guillermo Coria, a short hope

Some regret this Argentinian prodigy, who came very close to being among the Grand Slam champions, since he had obtained two match points during a 2004 Roland Garros final against his compatriot Gaston Gaudio (0-6, 3 -6, 6-4, 6-1, 8-6).

His career was short but prodigious. The player reached his peak between 2003 and 2005. The Argentinian was for two or three seasons the best player in the world on clay., a surface on which he won 10 of his 11 titles, including the Masters Series in Hamburg in 2003 and Monte Carlo in 2004. These titles earned him the nickname “El Mago” (the magician). Unfortunately, if he aimed high, it was not enough against Martin Verkek in the semi-final at Roland-Garros in 2004. The game took place in three sets (7-6, 6-4, 7-6 ), leaving Coria on the sidelines.

His career, which began with a positive test for nandrolone in 2001, ended in 2009, when he was only 27 years old.

5 – Elena Dementieva, the elegant

Elena Dementieva, an athlete blessed with a brilliant backhand, was an excellent and consistent baseline player, promising to win several major titles. In 2004, she reached the finals of two Grand Slam tournaments, in Paris and New York, losing each time to a compatriot: Anastasia Myskina at Roland Garros and Svetlana Kuznetsova at the US Open.

Ninth seed on clay at Roland-Garros in 2004, the match against Myskina turned into a nightmare for Dementieva. His service, a recurring weak point, was catastrophic, in particular because of a throw too far to the right. Distraught and making double mistakes, she even started shouting to express her frustration: “I hate my shift!” » Result, a quiet victory for Myskina: 6-1, 6-2.

These champions are now all retired, but their exploits in the world of tennis will remain engraved.

Also read: Who are the oldest tennis champions to have played?



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