Hewitt returns to Roland Garros
Lleyton Hewitt's coach says the Australian enters this year's French Open with one eye on the grass courts of Wimbledon next month.
Lleyton Hewitt’s coach says the Australian enters this year’s French Open with one eye on the grass courts of Wimbledon next month.
The two-time grand slam champion heads into Sunday’s opening round clash against world No.37 Albert Montanes without having played a competitive match for more than two months.
His mentor Tony Roche said the major goal for the 2002 Wimbledon champion was to avoid another injury setback in his return from foot surgery
“He has done everything possible that he could do in terms of the off court training and limited amount of time he has had since the operation,” Roche said.
“The important thing here is to get through without any setbacks and have a good preparation for the grass.
“Anything here is a bonus.”
The French Open is the only grand slam that Hewitt has not reached the final.
The two-time quarterfinalist has been dealt some tough draws in recent French titles, being bundled out by five-time champion Rafael Nadal in four of his past five trips.
Hewitt has played Montanes twice, defeating him both times in straight sets at Wimbledon in 2008 and at the 2006 US Open.
“Tough match, but it could have been worse,” Roche said.
Roche had mixed feelings about Hewitt being handed an early start to the tournament.
“It would have been nice to have an extra couple of days seeing as he has not played a tournament for a long time,” he said.
“If he happens to get through this first match he has a couple of days off to recover and see how he pulls up.
“So there are pluses and minuses.”
The winner of the match plays 19th seed Marin Cilic in the second round.