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Tennis: Federer, Davenport Top Seeds for French Open


World No.1 tennis player Roger Federer of Switzerland has received a favorable draw for next week's French Open as he aims to become only the sixth man to win all four Grand Slam tournaments.

On paper it looks like Federer is not likely to face a difficult challenge until the quarterfinals, where he could face David Nalbandian. The Argentine was a semifinalist in Paris last year and he holds a 5-2 record over Federer.

The top-seeded Federer, who has never gotten beyond the quarterfinals of the French Open in six attempts, will face a qualifier or a lucky loser. He was originally scheduled to take on Sweden's Robin Soderling in the first round, but Soderling was promoted to the 33rd seed after countryman Joachim Johansson withdrew with an injured elbow.

On the women's side, top seed Lindsay Davenport, who has never won the title at Roland Garros, faces Katerina Srebotnik of Slovenia in her opening match. Wimbledon champion Maria Sharapova faces fellow-Russian Evgenia Linetskaya.

The withdrawal of former champion Serena Williams of the United States because of an ankle injury overshadowed the draw.

Williams withdrew during a quarterfinal match at Amelia Island in Florida last month, and then missed the German Open earlier this month. She lost her first match after returning to tournament play at the Italian Open on May 11th. She moved poorly and called the defeat -- a 7-6, 6-1 loss to Italy's Francesca Schiavone -- the worst of her career.

Some information for this report provided by AP.

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