IT’S Middle Sunday in Paris and Mark Stinchcombe (@markstinchcombe) brings along the best bets.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga v Tomas Berdych | Sunday 11:30
I chanced opposing Tsonga in the previous round due to his form/fitness but this is a match he isn’t expected to prevail in against 2/5 shot Berdych.
Berdych has had a decent year under new coach Daniel Vallverdu, and while alluding to not troubling the top players in my outright preview, he’s been consistent in beating everyone else, clocking up 38 wins on tour to date.
This is a matchup where simply Berdych is better in every department emphasised by their 7-2 head-to-head record in Tomas’ favour. They played in the quicker conditions of Madrid earlier this month with Berdych winning 7-5 6-2 and I’m expect something similar.
Berdych has dropped a set in each of his last two matches, albeit both on tie-breaks, however, even if that is the case here, I think he’ll do enough to cover the 4.5 game handicap in the other sets.
Stan Wawrinka v Gilles Simon | Sunday 13:30
These two have met six times before and have shared the victories 3-3. 8th seed Stan has so far kept his emotions in check dropping just the one set although all matches he was comfortably expected to win.
12th seed Gilles Simon came through a five setter with fellow countryman Nicolas Mahut showing good fight to come back from 2-1 down. Simon hasn’t had the greatest clay court swing, although defeat to David Ferrer is no shame in which he took a set off the Spaniard.
They’ve played here once before, albeit three years ago, and that went five sets. Simon also won both of their matches last year with both going the distance. I’m expecting another battle between these two with it going at least four.
Gael Monfils v Roger Federer | Sunday 13:30
In my outright preview I mentioned the possibility of these two meeting in the 4th round, and despite Gael’s best efforts to play as much tennis as possible, he’s still managed to just about get here.
Roger has had a comfortable journey to the same stage albeit against opponents he’s been no bigger than 1/50 to defeat. As we already know Monfils has won the last two meetings, both on clay, both in straight sets, including last month in Monte Carlo. Can he do it again? Of course he can.
How much will the previous matches have taken out of him? It’s a good question but the win against Pablo Cuevas was the 13th time he’s played five sets at Roland Garros so he’s certainly used to it and has obviously had a day off inbetween. In-front of his home crowd, lets hope for some more ‘Paris magic’ for La Monf.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga v Tomas Berdych – Berdych -4.5 Games (10/11 Ladbrokes)
Stan Wawrinka v Gilles Simon – Over 3.5 Sets (8/11 Bet365)
Gael Monfils v Roger Federer – Gael Monfils to win (5/2 Bet365)
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