Paris:Roger Federer's bid to win a first French Open will face a testing start after he was drawn to face big American Sam Querrey in the first round.
But the Swiss world number one had the comfort of avoiding Novak Djokovic, the best player in the world this year, until a possible final clash.
Instead the Serbian world number three, who took Federer's Australian Open title in January, was placed in the same half of the draw as triple champion Rafael Nadal who is bidding to become the first player since Bjorn Borg in 1981 to win four titles in a row here.
Nadal, who has a perfect record at Roland Garros of 21 wins in 21 matches, begins his campaign against a qualifier with a possible tricky quarter-final against David Nalbandian lying in wait.
Nadal has lost both his career meetings with the muscular Argentininan.
Djokovic, meanwhile, begins his campaign against Germany's Denis Gremelmayr
Federer will still have a tough road to a possible final.
Federer, bidding to complete a career Grand Slam after losing to Nadal in the last two years, will face the 20-year-old Querrey who is riding high after capturing his maiden career title in Las Vegas this year.
Querrey also showed that he is no fool on clay when he reached the quarter-finals at the Monte Carlo Masters in April knocking out former French Open winner Carlos Moya on the way.
Former triple champion Gustavo Kuerten, who will be playing his last match before retirement, faces a tricky opener against French top 20 player Paul-Henri Mathieu.
Women's top seed Maria Sharapova, bidding to win a first French Open and complete a career Grand Slam, begins her campaign against fellow Russian Evgeniya Rodina, the world number 104.
Second seed Serbian Ana Ivanovic, the runner-up to Justine Henin in 2007, faces Sweden's Sofia Andersson while 2002 champion Serena Williams of the United States starts against fellow American Ashley Harkelroad.