Novak Djokovic can still win a few Grand Slam titles, feels Australian Open director Craig Tiley

2021 French Open - Day Fifteen
Novak Djokovic after winning the French Open in 2021.

Former World No. 1 Novak Djokovic can go past Rafael Nadal's 22 Grand Slam titles, according to Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley.

The Serb will be gunning to win his 23rd Grand Slam title at the French Open. With Rafael Nadal's withdrawal, many feel this is the Serb's best chance to become the greatest-ever tennis player in the open era. Currently, both Djokovic and Nadal are on par with 22 Major wins.

Speaking at the AO Show podcast, Craig Tiley said although Djokovic isn't in the best of form coming into Roland Garros, he is very difficult to beat in Slams.

"He (Djokovic) hasn't had the normal leader that he has coming in, but, when he plays Grand Slams, he's really difficult to beat," he said.

Tiley further added that everyone knows the former World No. 1 can win many Majors but the question is about how many can he win.

"So you know, I think at some point it's going to happen, whether it be here or at the Wimbledon or the US or back at Australia," he added. "I think he's, we all know he's got quite a few Slams left in him and we still don't know how many."

Novak Djokovic has won the French Open twice, in 2016 and 2021. This will also be the first time the French Open will be played without Nadal or Roger Federer since 1998.

Novak Djokovic's likely opponents at French Open 2023

Novak Djokovic at the Italian Open earlier this month.
Novak Djokovic at the Italian Open earlier this month.

Novak Djokovic is coming into the French Open without a title on clay this year. However, given the champion he is, the Serb can bring out his best in one of the sport's biggest events, as he has done many times in the past.

The former World No. 1 is seeded third at Roland Garros. He will be up against USA's Aleksandar Kovacevic, who is ranked 114th on the ATP rankings, in the first round. He would mostly then run into Hungarian Marton Fucsovics in the second round.

The Serb will mostly meet World No. 34 Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in the third round. The Spaniard already has five quarter-final appearances this season, two of which came on clay at Barcelona and Estoril. Fokina would be expected to test Djokovic for the first time in this edition of the French Open.

Djokovic's fourth-round opponent could be Marseille champion Hubert Hurkacz. The duo have met once this year, on the hardcourt of Dubai. Hurkacz managed to stretch the Djokovic in the second set before losing 6-3, 7-5.

World No. 7 Andrey Rublev is on a collision course with the Serb in the quarter-finals.

The next would be a potential semi-final clash against Carlos Alcaraz. It is a match fans would be waiting for in the upcoming French Open. However, the Serb could also run into former French Open runner-up Stefanos Tsitsipas, if the Greek player manages to get past Alcaraz.

Either Daniil Medvedev or Holger Rune would then be in the way of Djokovic's 23rd Grand Slam title.

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Edited by Ankush Das
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