Rafael Nadal – surprise, surprise – leads the field as the runaway favourite to win an eighth Frenchy. Is he the best tennis pick really or is there another one that we should spot?
Read up on our latest French Open market analysis and decide where the value is to be had.
Topping the charts
As things currently stand, the French Open is billed a two-horse race between familiar protagonists – Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.
Rafael Nadal has established himself as the player to beat after rebounding from his Monte-Carlo defeat to Djokovic with three straight titles – Barcelona, Madrid and Rome – adding to his previously bagged three titles on the season. On the strength of his rich vein of form since his comeback and his overarching record in Paris, which includes seven titles and earned him the label ‘King of Clay’, a stronger case than Nadal’s to win the tournament outright cannot be found going into the French Open.
And bookies have responded in kind, listing him as the runaway favourite to win outright. Pinnacle has Nadal priced at 1.709 right now and William Hill has him listed at -150, an overnight increase from yesterday’s price of -138. If you are so inclined and haven’t already, jumping on Nadal’s odds right now might be a good idea. Before bookies runaway with his price tag altogether and make him a less attractive play.
Novak Djokovic’s stock value has seen a decline since the start of the European clay-court swing and his momentous victory in Monte Carlo. When Djokovic was dumped unceremoniously in Madrid and Rome, effectively seen to have failed in challenging Nadal’s domination on clay, his betting odds moved further away from even money. Earlier in May, he was listed under +150. Now he is at +175 at William Hill and as high as 3.350 at Pinnacle. For Djokovic fans, it’s not all bad news though. There is an upside to be had; that is, with the limited match play Djokovic should go into the French Open fresh as a daisy. And we all know how dangerous he can be then.
Scratch-off Lotto anybody?
Outside of the tandem of Nadal and Djokovic, one gets the decided impression of betting a long shot with prices looking like those from scratch-off lotto. Anybody feeling lucky?
Roger Federer has largely stayed put despite recently finishing runner-up in Rome. Bookies have barely budged on his price since it moved towards the +1500 mark at the start of the European clay court swing and, what’s more, it looks to remain there for the foreseeable. Pinnacle has Federer as high as 22.000. Wait a minute! Are we talking about LE F-E-D-E-R-E-R, only the greatest player to have graced the sport? Colour the world fickle. Granted, Federer went out quietly to Nadal in the Rome final. He hasn’t won a title yet this season and also was sidelined with a back injury for a stretch. Still, be that as it may, that is too tempting a price to ignore for a great champion such as he is.
David Ferrer (listed at +2500 at William Hill), Tomas Berdych, (+4000) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Stanislas Wawrinka (both level at betting odds of +6600) are four players that have come into form over the course of the European clay-court swing. If there were an outside shot in the field of players for our tennis picks, based purely on performances this past month or so one has to concede one of them has the best shot to be that outsider.
Tennis Betting Verdict:
With news coming down the wire that World No.2 Andy Murray and No.7 Juan Martin Del Potro have joined the growing list of players that are out of the French Open for various reasons, the impact will be felt in the draw. The immediate impact: Federer is the instant beneficiary. He’ll move into the second seed slot, which means he’ll definitely be in the opposite half of the draw to Djokovic. Granted, not until the draw is out will we know if Nadal will indeed fall into his half or not, but just the possibility that tennis gods might conspire to put both Nadal and Djokovic together in the same half, all of a sudden, makes his delicious price look even better. If anything, he’s the best “long shot” play of the lot. Otherwise, conventional wisdom dictates Nadal is smart money.