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French Open Tips & Preview – Annett Kontaveit V Ajla Tomljanovic

WILL EVANS’ daily preview serves up French Open tips for experienced Aussie Ajla Tomljanovic’s tough first-round clash with fifth seed Anett Kontaveit.

French Open Tips – Annett Kontaveit V Ajla Tomljanovic

22.30 (AEST), Mon 23rd May @ Stade de Roland Garros, Paris

History: Played 2: Kontaveit 2 V Tomljanovic 0

Last meeting: US Open, 2019 (R64): Kontaveit d Tomljanovic 4-6 7-5 6-2

Final Thoughts: Ajla Tomljanovic is Australia’s top women’s player with Ash Barty farewelling the game, but she faces a difficult opening-round assignment in Paris against fifth seed Anett Kontaveit.

Tomljanovic reached the fourth round on French Open debut in 2014 but has exited in the first round four times and the second twice since then. She achieved a maiden slam quarter-final at Wimbledon last year, however, and is currently ranked 42nd after breaking into the top-40 for a career-high ranking in February.

The 29-year-old has been in reasonable form on the clay swing, including a win over Camila Giorgi at the Italian Open. But an injury cut her Morocco Open campaign during the quarter-finals on Thursday.

Kontaveit is a well-credentialled performer whose best French Open showing was a fourth-round appearance in 2018, while she made it to the third round last year. The Estonian has won 12 of her last 16 first-round slam matches.

A solid clay-court player with runs to the 2019 Stuttgart Open and Palermo Ladies Open finals on her CV, Kontaveit has had a limited build-up to the French Open. She beat Angelique Kerber and Ekaterina Alexandrova in Stuttgart before losing to Aryna Sabalenka, while Petra Martic upset the 26-year-old in the first round in Rome.

This pair has met twice previously – both on American hard-courts in 2019, with Kontaveit winning the Miami Open and US Open showdowns in hard-fought three-setters.

Neither player is in blistering touch, nor are they coming into the tournament low on confidence. But question marks over Tomljanovic’s health tips the scales further towards Kontaveit.

Tip: Games Handicap – Kontaveit -4.5 @ $1.93


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