It’s been an intriguing start to this year’s French Open, with 12 seeds falling by the wayside in the first three days. Apart from the defending women’s champion Jelena Ostapenko and former champion Venus Williams, all the big guns are safely into round 2, and there are some great matches to look forward to.
Here’s your complete betting guide to round 2 of the 2018 French Open.
Big names should make it through to round 3
In our round 1 preview, we picked a couple of odds-against tips that could progress to round two, and our tips are now just one match away from meeting in round 3. We backed Guillermo Garcia-Lopez to overcome former champ Stan Wawrinka in the first round and the veteran Spaniard duly obliged in five sets. It was a gruelling win for Garcia-Lopez and he will find it much harder against Karen Kachenov in round 2. The 22-year-old Russian is ranked 38 in the world and came through his opening match in straight sets. Back Kachenov at 1/2
We also tipped British number 3, Cameron Norrie, to come through round one at 6/5 and the Davis Cup player benefited from the early retirement of Peter Gojowczyk. Norrie has a tough match in round 2 against home favourite Lucas Pouille and the 15th seed should come through at 2/9. Fellow Brit Kyle Edmund had no problems in his first-round match and can beat inconsistent Marton Fucsovics at 1/3.
Number 14 seed Jack Sock fell at the first hurdle in Paris for the second year running and the win for Jurgen Zopp means that two lucky losers meet in round 2. Zopp plays Ruben Bemelmans who beat Yuki Bhambri in straight sets and looked in good form. Considering that Zopp had to play five gruelling sets, the Belgian looks decent value at evens. Considering his recent form, it’s perhaps a surprise that number 6 seed Kevin Anderson is available at 8/13 to beat Pablo Cuevas. Anderson has won the previous two meetings between the two men and sailed through his opening Roland Garros match for the loss of just seven games.
All of Cuevas’ 6 ATP titles have come on clay, but the Uruguayan lost in the first round in both Monte Carlo and Rome this season, and Anderson can progress here at 8/13. Last year saw Gilles Simon fall out of the world’s top 50 for the first time since 2005 but there have been signs this year that the French player is returning to form. He won his 13th ATP tour title earlier this year and took Dominic Thiem to a final set on clay at the Lyon Open earlier this month.
Simon plays big American Sam Querrey who has reached the second round for the first time since 2014. Querry’s record in Paris is pretty poor – he has only won four matches in eleven visits to the tournament – and so there is some value in backing Simon to prevail at 3/4. We tipped Borna Coric to overcome number 22 seed Philipp Kohlschreiber in round 1 and the Croatian came through in four sets. He should beat qualifier Thomas Fabbiano at 1/16 and set up a meeting with number 11 seed Diego Schwartzmann who can beat qualifier Adam Pavlasek at 1/6.
Rafa Nadal came through his opening match in straight sets and is an unbackable 1/100 to beat world number 78 Guido Pella while number 2 seed Alexander Zverev should beat Dusan Lajovic at 1/12.
As predicted, there have been plenty of casualties in the first round of the women’s event, most notably defending champion Jelena Ostapenko and former winner Venus Williams. It’s not been the best 18 months for rising star Belinda Bencic who has fallen from a career-high ranking of 7 to number 73 in the world. Appearing at Roland Garros for the first time in three years, the Swiss player came from a set down to beat Italian qualifier Deborah Chiesa in round one and she could be a tricky opponent for 19th seed Magdelena Rybarikova.
The 29-year -old has never got past the second round in Paris in ten attempts although her last three Grand Slam appearances have been her most successful. There’s some value in backing the Swiss youngster at 8/5.
Lucie Safarova is a former Roland Garros finalist and has won two French Open doubles titles. She knows her way around a clay court and could provide a tricky opponent for compatriot Karolina Pliskova in round 2. While the 6th seed is the favourite, the experienced Safarova offers decent value at 9/4. Sloane Stephens looked in good form and should have no trouble beating qualifier Magdelena Frech at 2/11 while number 23 seed Carla Suarez Navarro lost just one game against Ana Konjuh and can beat Maria Sakkari at 1/2.
Maria Sharapova was taken the distance by Richel Hogenkamp in round 1 and faces a tricky test against rising star Donna Vekic. The Croatian youngster will have plenty of backers at 9/4 but this is only the second time in six visits that she has progressed beyond the first round at Roland Garros. Sharapova should win at 2/7.
Considering they have similar records on clay this year Zarina Diyas offers some value at 2/1 to beat Naomi Osaka while Daria Kasatkina can reach round 3 for the third consecutive year with a win over Kirsten Flipkens at 1/6. Elise Mertens is one of our tournament dark horses and the number 16 seed survived a scare against Varvara Lepchenko in round 1. Mertens plays Heather Watson next with the Brit having walloped home talent Oceane Dodin in round 1 for the loss of just three games. Mertens should win at 1/7 while you can back Watson at 4/1.
Odds are provided at time of writing, please check your betslip to confirm they have not changed before betting.