Chiefly among them was Rafael Nadal who looked very dejected when he was announcing his withdrawal from this year's edition. It's the first Roland Garros he's going to miss in pretty much two decades and it's a strange feeling for many involved.
From colleagues to former players everyone who is in Paris is feeling his absence. Martina Navratilova is among them as she explained how his absence from the event has left a massive hole which nobody can really fill.
A massive, massive hole. When somebody has dominated a tournament as much as Rafa has dominated this. For almost two decades, it has been Rafael Nadal against the field. Now everybody thinks they have a chance to win because Rafa’s not here. Even though he hasn’t been playing, it’s a massive, massive hole that nobody can fill.
His absence from the event has left the event 'wide open'. This a great chance for all to try and win the event because he's not in the draw. Alexander Zverev played amazing last year but he couldn't overcome Nadal (he was losing at the time of the injury). Casper Ruud was amazing last year as well but he too couldn't beat Nadal. Neither could Djokovic and now he's not there.
The focus immediately shifts to Novak Djokovic as a potential winner. He's the most experienced player in the draw, only one of a handful that have ever won a grand slam but he won't be the only favourite. There is a few including rising star Carlos Alcaraz. In fact, Djokovic himself considers Alcaraz the favourite but none of that matters until we move to the courts. It's on the court where trophies are won and that's to be determined.