French Open Tennis 2024 – Men’s Outright Tips and Betting Preview

We are approaching the last week of May which means that it is time for the second Grand Slam of the year with the stars of the tennis world heading to Paris for the French Open, the clay court major of the season.

Novak Djokovic won this tournament a year ago and the world number one will be looking to keep hold of his crown in what many are calling the most open men’s French Open for quite some time. There are plenty of suitors for his crown.

Recent Winners

2023 – Novak Djokovic

2022 – Rafael Nadal

2021 – Novak Djokovic

2020 – Rafael Nadal

2019 – Rafael Nadal

2018 – Rafael Nadal

2017 – Rafael Nadal

2016 – Novak Djokovic

2015 – Stan Wawrinka

2014 – Rafael Nadal

The Format

There are 128 players in the draw which has been determined prior to the event beginning and the competition is a straight knockout over the best of five sets like the other Grand Slams. The new rule that has been blanketed across all Grand Slams for a few years is in place at this tournament where any deciding set which reaches 6-6 will be settled by a 10-point match tiebreak.

Top Quarter

Novak Djokovic is getting closed in on in the world rankings but he remains top of them for now and he is the number one seed in this tournament as a result. That puts him at the top of the bracket where he will aim to make a successful defence of the title. He is slated to face Casper Ruud in the quarter final which would be a repeat of the final from last year. Six other seeds will be looking to stop that from happening though. They are Tomas Martin Etcheverry, the home player Adrian Mannarino, the American pair of Taylor Fritz and Tommy Paul, Francis Cerundolo and Lorenzo Musetti.

We will find all the way down the draw that there are some huge names who aren’t seeds this week. The pick of those in the top quarter is the home man Gael Monfils who certainly won’t lack for crowd support for however long he is in the competition. Other players include Fabio Fognini, Botic van de Zandschulp, Roman Safiullin, Thanasi Kokkinakis and Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in what looks like being a competitive quarter.

Second Quarter

Alexander Zverev has had another good clay court season which has led to him being the fourth seed for the tournament and he is the highest one in the second quarter as a result of that. If the section goes to the seeding then he is scheduled to meet Daniil Medvedev in the quarter final although the Russian isn’t as comfortable on a clay court as he is a hard one which will interest the other six seeds who are Mariano Navone, Alexander Bublik, Alex de Minaur, Holger Rune, Karen Khachanov and Tallon Griekspoor.

The biggest unseeded name of all of them is in this quarter of the draw as the man who has made Roland Garros a second home in the form of Rafael Nadal stands out a mile here. David Goffin is another who was high up in the rankings back in the day while other familiar names in this section who aren’t seeded include the British player Dan Evans, former Wimbledon semi-finalist Roberto Bautista Agut, Jan-Lennard Struff and the player who missed out in the Geneva final in Tomas Macrac.

Third Quarter

The third quarter is the one which looks the pick of the bunch and it is headed up by the Wimbledon champion Carlos Alcaraz, who goes in search of a first French Open crown over the next couple of weeks or so. He is seeded to meet Andrey Rublev in what would be a tasty quarter final but six good seeds are in this section out to stop that from happening. The biggest one of those is the former finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas. The others are Seb Korda, Felix Auger-Aliassime, Ben Shelton and the two home players Arthur Fils and Ugo Humbert.

This is probably the quarter where there are least big name unseeded players but Lorenzo Sonego was once seeded in this and is a threat on clay while Marton Fucsovics has proven that he can cause the bigger names in the game a little but of trouble when given the opportunity. The biggest of the unseeded names is probably the former US Open finalist Kei Nishikori while British hopes in this section lie with Jack Draper.

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Bottom Quarter

The Australian Open champion Jannik Sinner is the number two seed this fortnight and will be looking to continue his quest for the calendar slam from the bottom quarter of the draw. Hubert Hurkacz is the man who is seeded to stop him in the quarter final but as with the other sections six seeds will be out to stop that from taking place. They are Frances Tiafoe, Alejandro Tabilo, Grigor Dimitrov, Nicolas Jarry, Sebastian Baez and Cameron Norrie.

Two huge names who aren’t seeded this week are in this quarter of the draw and they’ll face each other in a veteran first round match as Andy Murray plays what many expect to be his final French Open against the former champion Stan Wawrinka. The home veteran Richard Gasquet has been awarded a wildcard and he has been drawn in this section while Borna Coric, Denis Shapovalov and Luca Van Assche will be looking to pick up a few wins.

Outright Betting

It isn’t very often that I’m prepared to take an outright bet from a quarter which contains Novak Djokovic but that is the case here because the Serb doesn’t look anything like the man we know he is. He has gone through a bunch of backroom staff changes and his results are reflecting of that. While we can’t write the Serb off, I do think at 12/1 Casper Ruud is the value here. He was my pick for this a couple of years ago when Rafael Nadal denied him in the final and it was Djokovic himself who stopped him in the final last year. Ruud comes in here off the back of an excellent clay campaign once again. He won in Barcelona and in the warm up event in Geneva last week and make the final in Monte Carlo where he beat Djokovic in the semi-final. Ruud is in fine form and with doubts over Djokovic and the other big seed in his half, Alexander Zverev, running into Rafael Nadal in the first round, the Norwegian looks the pick to me.

In the bottom half I’ll have a dabble on the Chilean player Alejandro Tabilo, the man who made it to the Rome final and looked like he was going to beat Alexander Zverev for that Masters 1000 crown but couldn’t quite get the job done in the second set before going down in three. Prior to that run in Rome, he won a French Challenger title so he actually had eight clay wins in succession to his name at one point. Jannik Sinner hasn’t been seen since pulling out of Madrid so if he isn’t fit his section could open right up, especially with Hubert Hurkacz much more effective on faster surfaces. If Tabilo can get into the tournament this draw could open right up and at 100/1 he feels worth a dabble.

Quarter Betting

I feel compelled to get involved in the second quarter of the draw for a quarter bet this week. I say that because Alexander Zverev has to have doubts over him. Not only is he no guarantee to beat Rafael Nadal in the first round but if he does win that he might have to exude a lot of energy which comes back to haunt him later in the week. His domestic abuse court case begins during this tournament too and that might also distract him a little bit.

I can’t be having Daniil Medvedev on clay and I don’t like Nadal staying fit enough to win five matches so this could be won by a big price and I’ll take a chance that Karen Khachanov can get the job done here. He has been a little unlucky on the clay this season with it needing Tsitsipas, Sinner and Tabilo to stop him in the three Masters 1000 events so that is two of the best players on this surface and one who went on to reach the final in Rome. This feels like a quarter which could open right up and the Russian could be the man to capitalise.


Back C.Ruud to win French Open (e/w) for a 1.5/10 stake at 13.00 with Spreadex (1/2 1-2)

Back A.Tabilo to win French Open (e/w) for a 0.5/10 stake at 101.00 with Coral (1/2 1-2)

Back K.Khachanov to win 2nd Quarter for a 1/10 stake at 17.00 with William Hill

Back him here: