French Open day 7: Murray to drop at least a set against danger man

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There’s always heightened interest when Andy Murray steps onto the dusty courts of Roland Garros and that’s exactly the case once more on the first Saturday of the French Open, as the Brit takes on Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber in round three.

After sweeping aside world number 66 Mario Matosevic in three very comfortable sets, things are about to get a lot tougher for the Wimbledon champ when he locks horns with 28th seed Kohlschreiber.

Below we offer three best bets from the seventh day of the French Open, starting with Murray’s next assignment.

Philipp Kohlschreiber to win at least one set v Andy Murray @ 4/9

Given the confident showing Murray displayed in round two, we’d still take the 3/10 on the Scot prevailing; however, don’t expect it to be anything like as effortless.

These opponents have only squared up twice before, both times in 2010, so although it’s hard to read too much into their 1-1 record, the significant result was the 6-2, 6-1 victory on clay in the German’s favour.

Kohlschreiber is somewhat of a clay-court specialist having claimed three of his five ATP Tour titles on the dirt, with the most recent arriving just a week prior to tennis’ only clay-based Grand Slam at the Dusseldorf Open.

Fernando Verdasco to beat Richard Gasquet @ 1/1

Unlike Murray and Kohlschreiber, these two warriors have done battle no less than 15 times, with the slightly younger Gasquet edging it 8-7.

Nevertheless at even money we’re siding with Verdasco to get the better of the Frenchman as he did in straight sets during their last meeting at Indian Wells in March and again when they last duelled on clay.

Interestingly, they’ve never met at a Grand Slam, but all of the Spaniard’s last six victories have come in straight sets, with a 3-0 scoreline available at 5/1 with Ladbrokes.

Sorana Cirstea to beat Jelena Jankovic @ 10/3

As her price suggests, Cirstea is certainly considered the underdog against the number six seed Jankovic, although the former’s superior 4-2 head-to-head record would say otherwise, especially on clay where she’s 2-0.

Still only 24, it was a win over her more illustrious Serbian opponent in the fourth round of the 2009 edition at Roland Garros that announced a 19-year-old Romanian to the world of tennis.

Although Jankovic has enjoyed better form on clay this season, she’s too short to progress at 2/9 when you consider Cirstea won their last meeting, albeit on hard courts, in straight sets last year.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.