Goran Ivanisevic remains adamant that Novak Djokovic has been the best tennis player in the world over the last decade. The Croatian also believes that the Serbian is the only player that can stop Rafael Nadal from winning a 14th title at Roland Garros in 2021.

All eyes on Thursday were on the impending French Open main draw with Nadal facing the prospect of being drawn in Djokovic's half owing to him holding the ill-fated number three seed. The draw certainly did not disappoint as the Spaniard was drawn in the same half as the world number one.

Djokovic and Nadal are now set for a semi-finals showdown rather than in the final, that is if they come through unscathed in the earlier rounds. It became the Big Three in one half when Roger Federer was also drawn in the same quarter as Djokovic with the two now set for a potential quarterfinal clash.

The Spaniard, who is targeting a record-breaking 21st men's singles Grand Slam title in Paris, will be the top favourite alongside Djokovic. The Serbian lifted the trophy at the French Open in 2016 but has been a losing finalist on three occasions.

Ivanisevic's wish for Nadal to be in the same half of the draw as Djokovic was granted on Thursday. The 2001 Wimbledon winner feels it will be better for the Serbian to face his toughest opponent prior to the final owing to Nadal's psychological advantage when it comes to the summit clash.

"In my opinion, Nadal is number one favourite to win the French Open and there's only one person who can beat him to that number 14 title - and that's Novak," Ivanisevic told the BBC.

"It might be madness, but I would like them to be in the same part of the table. Novak would perform better against him in the half. And Rafa would perform better in the final. It's psychological," he added. "But he has to be 100%. We saw last year he did not show up for the final. He showed up too late. You cannot give Nadal too much space, otherwise he eats you."

In the overall head-to-head between the two tennis greats, Djokovic holds a slight advantage with a 29-28 record. However, when it comes to clay, Nadal holds the edge winning their last five clashes with an overall record of 19-7 on the red dirt.

Roger Federer
Rafael Nadal feels Federer is the best in the history of the sport but labels Djokovic 'invincible' Getty