Djokovic to do it the hard way to win French Open

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Rafael Nadal has been backed into 4/5 from 10/11 in the French Open odds after chief rival Novak Djokovic was handed the far tougher draw at Roland Garros.

Nadal has been handed a tricky clash in the opening round against big-serving American John Isner, with Nikolay Davydenko looking the only other likely threat ahead of a potential quarter final with Robin Soderling, who is responsible for his only career defeat at the French Open.

Meanwhile, Djokovic has drifted from 5/4 to 6/4 to win a maiden French Open title as his section of the draw contains far more players who could conceivably cause an upset.

The Serb arrives at Roland Garros having remained unbeaten through 37 matches this season and it was largely expected that he would face Nadal in the final.

This is still expected to be the case, but Djokovic will first have to successfully negotiate his way through a draw of potential banana skins.

Up first for Djokovic is talented Dutch player Thiemo De Bakker, while from the third round onwards he will certainly have to ensure his guard is up.

A possible third round opponent for Djokovic is Juan Martin del Potro, who is only seeded at 25 for the French Open because injury has hampered virtually all of his season.

Next would come Richard Gasquet, who has shown signs of getting his career back on track of late, most notably when taking the scalp of Roger Federer at the recent Rome Masters en route to the semi finals.

Then Djokovic would face last year’s beaten Wimbledon finalist Thomas Berdych in the quarter finals, before potentially meeting Federer ahead of a final with Nadal.

Other special French Open bets that are available include 11/4 that Djokovic beats Nadal in the final as he has done recently in clay court tournaments in Madrid and Rome, while Nadal is 2/1 to get some revenge and beat Djokovic in the final.

A £30 stake on Federer winning the French Open would return £420. New customers can sign up here for a free £30 bet.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.