The second round of the French Open begins on Wednesday when those who made it through the draw over the first three days begin to set foot on the courts at Roland Garros once again, looking for place in the third round.
We saw plenty of shocks in the first round of the tournament but there were still enough favourites to progress to ensure we have a decent day of action to look forward to in Paris throughout the course of Wednesday.
Day 3 Recap
It was a much better day for the majority of the big seeds with the likes of Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Elina Svitolina and Karolina Pliskova all coming through in straight sets while the likes of Ash Barty came through after a scare. There was a tighter win for Matteo Berrettini but the outlook wasn’t so good for the likes of Andrey Rublev and Felix Auger-Aliassime, who along with Venus Williams bit the dust at the earliest opportunity.
It was another dire day of betting for us. Even certain looking winners are finding a way to lose with Albert Ramos-Vinolas winning the first set 6-1 and looking to be cruising before failing to win another set despite having a set point in one of them and being a break up in another. That was compelled when Anastasija Sevastova lost to Jennifer Brady in one of the many matches which saw clay court specialists lose to supposed uncomfortable players on the surface.
Phillipe Chatrier Court
The day session on the Philippe Chatrier Court will be opened up by one of the home players left in the tournament as Harmony Tan goes up against the 20 seed Marketa Vondrousova before a good looking men’s match takes place as Karen Khachanov meets Kei Nishikori in what could be a marathon contest. The day session is rounded off by Serena Williams looking to make the third round. She faces Mihaela Buzarnescu while in the night session Tommy Paul meets the number 2 seed Daniil Medvedev.
Suzanne Lenglen Court
The controversial Alexander Zverev opens the show on the second court on Wednesday when he faces the Russian qualifier Roman Safiullin. The home star Caroline Garcia will once again look to thrill the crowds after that as she meets Polona Hercog before Stefanos Tsitsipas continues a promising clay court season. He meets Pedro Martinez who had a good win over Para winner Seb Korda in the first round. The final match on this court is an all-Belarussian affair as Aliaksandra Sasnovich meets Aryna Sabalenka.
Simonne Mathieu Court
An entertaining women’s match gets us going on the third show court on Wednesday when Belinda Bencic goes up against Daria Kasatkina before Roberto Bautista Agut looks to make further progress in the competition when he comes up against Henri Laaksonen. Victoria Azarenka is then back on the Roland Garros grounds for the third match on this court. She takes on the Danish player Clara Tauson. Pablo Carreno Busta gets the task of closing the show when he meets Enzo Couacaud in front of the Frenchman’s own fans.
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Best of the Rest
We are getting more doubles played out around the grounds now but there are still some decent singles players in action for those watching the streams or actually in the grounds themselves. Fabio Fognini and Casper Ruud are two such seeded players on show while Elena Rybakina, Paula Badosa, Madison Keys and Reilly Opelka are some of the other seeds who will be looking to make progress into the third round of the tournament.
I’ll take one in the men’s draw where I like Guido Pella to have far too much for a Marcos Giron who must be counting his lucky stars that he is still involved in this tournament. The American trailed Grigor Dimitrov 2-0 in sets in the first round and 5-1 in the third set. He was 40-0 down on the Dimitrov serve in that set as well and then the Bulgarian just completely collapsed before withdrawing in the fourth set. Make no mistake about it, Giron was outplayed until the collapse came.
Pella hasn’t exactly been pulling up trees over the last couple of years. The pandemic probably accounts for a lot of those struggles but if you do think back a couple of years then he was ranked 20 in the world after making the quarter finals of Wimbledon where the consistency of Roberto Bautista Agut was too much for him. That was on grass but he had more than enough clay results that year to suggest he is as comfortable on clay as you would expect someone from Argentina to be. I expect him to win this with a bit in hand.
I took on Belinda Bencic in the first round but ran into the mother of all shocking performances from Nadia Podoroska there. Podoroska lost 60 63 to a woman who isn’t comfortable on clay and made just four winners and a ridiculous 26 unforced errors so there was more than an air of fortune about the win for the Swiss ace. I’m prepared to take her on again with Daria Kasatkina who herself is no stranger to unforced errors but that is only because she attacks so much.
Kasatkina was a quarter finalist here in 2018 and previously won the juniors here so the clay of Roland Garros brings out the best in her. She actually has a bunch of clay court successes on her CV throughout her career at the various levels so there is no doubting that she is the more comfortable on this surface. As we’ve seen this week that doesn’t automatically mean she wins here but I do think the odds are wrong in making her an outsider so I’ll take the Russian with that in mind.
Back G.Pella (-4.5 games) to beat M.Giron for a 3/10 stake at 1.87 with BetVictor
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WON – Back D.Kasatkina to beat B.Bencic for a 3/10 stake at 2.10 with Betfair
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