French Open Tennis Picks: Is Nadal a Lock to Win his 10th French Open Title?

Nikki Adams

Wednesday, February 11, 2015 7:28 PM GMT

Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2015 7:28 PM GMT

It's never too soon to start making tennis predictions! Here is our early French Open preview capped off with fearless French Open 2015 picks for the men's game.

Live In Play Nadal vs. Djokovic French Open Tips & Predictions

Rafael Nadal Goes For La Decima
Rafael Nadal is bidding for a historic tenth French Open title (La Decima), 15th overall Grand Slam title. No player in the men's game has dominated a Grand Slam the way Nadal has the French Open. Frankly, it's remarkable, if not reason-defying. Hence, he enters as the indisputable favourite to win the 2015 French Open title at +125 tennis future odds. His only threat according to bookmakers is Novak Djokovic, listed at +163 future odds.

This handicapper analyzes the ATP 2015 Grand Slam Tennis Betting Schedule with Picks & Odds

Golden Age In Men's Tennis
This is, arguably, the golden age for men's tennis. When Pete Sampras set the previous Grand Slam winning record of 14 titles, with his last title in 2002 at the US Open, many experts and tennis enthusiasts believed it would hold for a very long time. Certainly, longer than seven years, which was how long it eventually took to smash the record.

In 2009, Roger Federer won the French Open to match Pete Sampras in the record books and then, a month later, he went one better by winning Wimbledon (his sixth Wimby and 15th overall title). A year later, Federer added the Australian Open to his tally. His last major was the 2012 Wimbledon title, setting the record to 17 Grand Slams, where it currently remains.

Federer's domination at the major level is remarkable in its proficiency and consistency. That he matched and surpassed Sampras' record in the space of six years (2003-2009) though is simply awe-inspiring and spectacular, if not mindboggling. It took Sampras 12 years to capture 14 Slams and he never won the French Open.

Five years on, after Federer's record-setting 2009, Rafael Nadal levelled Pete Sampras in the record books by winning the 2014 French Open – his fifth straight French Open, ninth overall.  Not for nothing is the Spaniard known as the King of Clay. And as he prepares to go for the incredible Decima at the French Open and 15th overall title, there's no doubt he's the player to beat on the red stuff.

Table 1 provides a quick overview of some of the future odds for the 2015 French Open (courtesy of Bet365). For a complete view of 2015 French Open odds on currently trading players, check into your choice sportsbook.
 

Table 1: Early Tennis Futures For the 2015 French Open

Rafael Nadal +125

Novak Djokovic +163

Juan Martin Del Potro +1600

Stanislas Wawrinka +1600

Roger Federer +1800

Andy Murray +2000

Kei Nishikori +2000

David Ferrer +2500

Grigor Dimitrov +3300

Marin Cilic +4000

Ernests Gulbis +5000

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga +5000

Milos Raonic +5000

Tomas Berdych +5000

Gael Monfils +6600


The only year Nadal failed to rule was 2009. That year, he lost to Robin Soderling in the R16, and Roger Federer capitalised with his first and only French Open crown by beating Soderling in the final. The only player that is being given a fair chance to usurp Rafael Nadal's domination of the French Open is Novak Djokovic, largely down to the fact that he's the only player to have given Nadal a serious run for his money on clay in recent seasons. Including last year's epic five-set marathon in the semis in Paris. After this tandem, the tennis futures odds spike up dramatically. (Depending on the sportsbook, slight variation is had in both the tennis odds and pecking order).

It's rather unbelievable (not to mention laughable) that Juan Martin Del Potro is matched at advantageous +1600 tennis odds to win the French Open, which is ridiculously short considering  the Argentine is underwent yet another wrist surgery in January and has barely played any tennis or competitive matches for over year. Talk about poor value for your tennis picks. SKIP, SKIP, SKIP.

Roger Federer and Stanislas Wawrinka are in the mix of contenders but at rather long +1800 and +1600 tennis odds. It's true the Swiss pair lost some of their shine in the wake of the Australian Open – Federer behind an untimely exit Down Under and Wawrinka by failing to defend his Aussie Crown (lost to Djokovic in the semis) and falling down to World No.8 in the rankings. Both however are exceptionally good clay courters, often underrated and at these prices they warrant some consideration on your tennis picks.

The constant and solid tennis threat Tomas Berdych looks way too big at +5000 tennis futures odds, which makes him one of the better value tennis picks at this early vantage point. Frankly, there's no rhyme or reason for the Czech to be so underrated. He's no stranger to clay  having grown up on the red stuff in the Czech Republic and making the French Open semis (2009). Certainly, Berdych has better credentials than Grigor Dimitrov who is priced shorter at +3300, which is an absurd rating largely down to typical market over reaction and general popularity. Not until the Bulgarian develops a consistent resume of beating top players can his price tag be taken seriously.

Andy Murray is a dicey tennis pick at +2000 to win the French Open title, given the fact he's never reached a clay court final, never mind won a clay court title. Then again, it's possible that his partnership with Frenchwoman Amelie Mauresmo would prove the catalyst for an unheralded run in Paris. Last year, Murray did play some exceptional clay court tennis. He even pushed Nadal around on his turf.

Nishikori (+2000) and Ferrer (+2500) cut interesting figures on the tennis odds board. One of the strengths this pair has in common is movement and defence, two aspects that come to the forefront of their respective games on this surface. By that same token, Raonic's lack of movement and shaky defence is exposed on this surface, particularly against the top players in the game, making him one of the least likely to come through at the French Open.

Finally, the best French hope for the title is Jo-Wilfried Tsonga at +5000. Followed closely by Gael Monfils at +6600. It's possible patriotic French fever could carry either one or both through a memorable French Open campaign. Too many inconsistencies in their game and injury woes however make them risky betting options on your tennis picks.


Tennis Betting Verdict
For early value, backing either Nadal or Djokovic is the sound option on early tennis picks. Take one or the other or take an each-way bet on the pair at some point. For outside value, Tomas Berdych is a value option at  the whopping price of +5000.  

Tennis Picks: Nadal +125

comment here