The Roland Garros is starting in a few days. Tennis fans are anxiously awaiting to see who will win this year’s edition of probably the most romantic and relaxed Grand Slam. Paris, the city of love, nice wine, and fantastic art, will stop being that for two weeks and become the center of the tennis universe.
The second Grand Slam of the year hides answers to several questions. Will Rafael Nadal win this trophy for the twelfth time in his career? Is Novak Djokovic capable of winning the non-calendar Slam for the second time in his career to become the first one to do so in the Open Era? And is there anyone else who can beat this duo and carve his name in the history books?
And what about the ladies competition? Their tournament is could well be even more interesting than the men’s. There are several names in the quest for the title, Simona Halep, Naomi Osaka, Petra Kvitova, Karolina Pliskova or maybe, just maybe, Kiki Bertens. All this promises for an exciting period ahead of us.
We’re here to break down both parts of the tournament and give a short preview of them.
Rafael Nadal is coming here with a win at Internazionali BNL d’Italia Masters in Rome. He defeated his greatest rival Novak Djokovic in three sets,
6-0, 4-6, 6-1, and though the majority of you might think it was easy, things weren’t like that. Nadal was dominant in that event, but you have to know that Djokovic had far lesser time for rest. He always played the last match of the program, and even had to take two games in just a few hours two days before the finals. On top of that, he went all the way in Madrid, winning the title in Nadal’s backyard.
But all this doesn’t change the fact that Rafa has the best chances to add another piece of silverware to his collection. Philippe Chatrier is his venue, and the Spaniard is unbelievable when he steps his legendary feet on that legendary court. Plus, the crowd there loves him. It is why all the bookies see him as the absolute favorite in Paris.
The second on the list is Djokovic who is chasing his fourth Grand Slam in a row. If by any chance the Serb achieves this, it will be an amazing record and the confirmation of his dominance over the past year. He received a huge boost by winning the Mutua Madrid Masters, and proved himself that he still has what it takes to win a trophy on clay.
These two guys are standing out from the crowd, and behind them is Dominic Thiem who showed that he has the potential to restrain any player on this surface, but has to be mentally stable in order to do so. Far behind him are Roger Federer, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev. The latter two are young hopes in search of their first Grand Slam title.
What can we say about the ladies? Simona Halep is the ultimate favorite. Not a big one like Nadal, in his competition, but still the biggest among the ladies. The Romanian native is looking to defend her title from the previous season, and to reach her third finals in a row. Halep became one of the best players on clay in the last couple of years, and at the moment, there isn’t a better player on this surface when looking at the big tournaments.
Kiki Bertens might be a huge surprise. The Duch player won the Madrid Masters and reached the semifinals of the Italian Open. She is looking good right now, and when we add that Roland Garros in ladies part of the tournament often brings some surprise, betting on Bertens could be a profitable investment. Odds on her winning here are 9.00, which is excellent for a dark horse like she is.
Naomi Osaka is slightly behind, then comes Serena Williams, Petra Kvitova, Pliskova, Sloan Stephens, etc. When talking about dark horses, don’t forget about Garbine Muguruza, the winner of 2016 edition here. Her win would multiply your bet 18 times.
Roland Garros starts this Sunday, at 10 a.m. (Pretoria Time, GMT +2)