Schiavone’s athleticism to help her reach French Open final
Francesca Schiavone looks great value at 4/7 to make her second successive French Open final and end Marion Bartoli’s impressive challenge in her home Grand Slam.
Schiavone has not had the easiest draw in her defence of her Roland Garros title, but has shown strong mental determination to beat Shuai Peng, Jelena Jankovic and most notably Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in her quarter final.
The defending champion was a set and 4-1 down in the match but recovered to beat the Russian teenager.
Meanwhile, she has also won four of her five career meetings with Bartoli, albeit the last of these was back in 2009 and none of them have been on clay.
Bartoli is the first French female to make the last four at Roland Garros since Mary Pierce in 2005 and has found her best clay form this season after usually finding a hard surface more to her liking.
Prior to Roland Garros, Bartoli reached the final in Strasbourg before having to retire injured and has followed up at the French Open with solid victories over Julia Goerges, Gisela Dulko and Svetlana Kuznetsova.
Bartoli is 5/4 in the French Open odds to reach the final, but she may struggle to cope with Schiavone’s superior athleticism and speed around the court, which are likely to produce far longer rallies.
Schiavone is certainly capable of winning the match in straight sets but given that she has been largely inconsistent in her recent rounds, this would be a risky bet at 6/4.
However, with all of their last three meetings featuring a tie-break, the best alternative French Open bet may be that one of the sets between Schiavone and Bartoli ends 7-6 to one of the players.
It is 5/2 that a tie break is required to settle at least one of the sets in the semi final.