Palmerbet white text Logo
Original Content

French Open Tips & Preview – Men’s Tournament

Get your tennis tips for the men’s section of the 2023 French Open draw. With the ‘King of Clay’ absent for the first time since 2004, Novak Djokovic and a quartet of worthy tyros seem to have the title market cornered.

 

THE TOP CONTENDERS

Carlos Alcaraz

Tipped as a genuine contender last year as a 19-year-old following his tournament wins in Rio, Miami, Barcelona and Madrid, Alcaraz was tipped up in the French Open quarters by Alexander Zverev. But he went on to win the US Open and surge to the No.1 ranking. Injury ruled him out of the Australian Open by the Spanish phenom returned to take out the Indian Wells and continue his ascent to Nadal’s ‘King of Clay’ mantle by defending his Barcelona Open and Madrid Masters titles. Alcaraz beat Novak Djovkovic in Madrid last year in their only meeting and should start as a favourite against any opponent over the next fortnight.

Odds: $2.40

Novak Djokovic

The 2016 and ’21 French Open champ first played at Roland Garros in 2005 – the same year as Nadal – and shapes as one player who will benefit from not seeing the fellow legend in the draw for the first time. He’s lost eight of their 10 meetings here, including all three finals and last year’s quarter-final. After winning Wimbledon and the Australian Open either side of being blocked from playing in the US Open, Djokovic has struggled to get going on this clay swing. He lost in the Round of 16 in Monte Carlo to Lorenzo Mussetti, and the quarters of the Srpska Open to Dusan Lajovic and the Rome Masters to Holger Rune. But no one rises to the grand slam occasion quite like Nole, who has made it to the last eight in the past 13 French Opens. Still a massive threat and should enjoy the focus being on the young guns as he pursues an unprecedented 23rd slam title.

Odds: $3.10

Holger Rune

An unseeded, 19-year-old quarter-final bolter at last year’s French Open, Rune has only gone from strength to strength since. The Danish tyro is ranked sixth, won a maiden Masters title in Paris in November by beating Djokovic in the final, was runner-up in the recent Monte Carlo and Rome Masters (beating Djokovic again at the latter) and collected his second straight Bavarian International trophy last month. A Rome Masters semi win over Casper Ruud, who beat Rune on his way to the French Open final last year, was another pre-Roland Garros confidence booster for the burgeoning star.

Odds: $10

Daniil Medvedev

The world No.3 has been in sparkling touch in 2023, winning five ATP titles – the Rotterdam Open, Qatar Open, Dubai Championships, Miami Masters and Rome Masters – and reaching the final at Indian Wells. Clay courts have long been his achilles heel (the US Open champ and five-time slam finalist has never been beyond the French Open quarters) but winning a maiden ATP trophy on clay in Rome last week, beating Rune in the final, was a huge statement. Perhaps still too limited on the surface to have Alcaraz’s or Djokovic’s measure, but arguably for the first time Medvedev is a genuine contender at Roland Garros.

Odds: $11

Stefanos Tsitsipas

A bona fide clay-court specialist, Tsitsipas made the French Open semis in 2020 and the final in ’21 – losing to Djokovic on both occasions – before being upset by Rune in the fourth round last year. Djokovic proved too good again at the Australian Open in January as Tsitsipas made his second slam final, while after a short injury break he’s been in good touch on clay with runs to the Barcelona Open final and the Rome Masters semis. Arguably the best player yet to win a major, the 24-year-old is a frontline contender but poor head-to-head records against the four players ahead of him in the title market is a concern.

Odds: $13

BEST AUSSIE CHANCE

Alex de Minaur

Nick Kyrgios’ ongoing absence leaves world No.19 de Minaur as the most realistic Australian hope of a deep run in Paris, though he doesn’t have much clay-court success to fall back on. Besides a convincing loss to Tsitsipas in the Barcelona Open quarters (after getting a walkover in the Round of 16), the 24-year-old livewire’s swing has consisted of early exits at the hands of lower-ranked players, while he’s never been past the second round at the French Open.

Odds: $376

BEST ROUGHIE

Andrey Rublev

Hugely underrated in this market, world No.7 Rublev has enjoyed an excellent 2023 season to date highlighted by reaching the final in Dubai, beating Rune to win the Monte Carlo Masters and making another clay-court final at the Srpska Open. The Russian has a grand slam quarter-final bogey – losing at that stage at the past three majors, including to Djokovic at the Australian Open in January – but it would not surprise to see him in a semi-final for the first time.

Odds: $41

Related

AUS OPEN PREVIEW – WOMEN’S TOURNAMENT

AUS OPEN PREVIEW – MEN’S TOURNAMENT

US Open Preview – Men’s Tournament

Palmerbet white text Logo
Search