French Open Day 13: Murray faces exit if he can’t end Wawrinka woe
It’s been a stop-start affair thanks to an unusual amount of early-summer rain in Paris, but at long last the end of this year’s French Open is in sight, but not before some fantastic semi-final matches.
The men’s line-up sees Novak Djokovic take on surprise package Dominic Thiem, but all eyes will be on the other semi, with two two-time Slam champions Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka.
Meanwhile Serena Williams faces Kiki Bertens, and Sam Stosur meets Garbine Muguruza, with the young Spaniard seeking to reach only a second career Slam final.
Here’s how it looks for what could be a fantastically dusty day of semi-final tennis…
Murray and Wawrinka in for the long haul
Andy Murray’s French Open has been a slog. Two five-set matches, plus a four-setter, while even his straight sets wins included a tie-break in each.
Where Murray might be alright though is that Stan Wawrinka hasn’t exactly shone either, grinding out results starting with a five-set win over Lukas Rosol in the opening round.
The Scot leads the head-to-heads 8-7 but a closer look shows Wawrinka winning each of the last three.
The Swiss player has also won all three clay court meetings, and perhaps that gives the reigning champion the edge, but only a small one.
Best Bet: Exactly five sets @ 9/4
Djokovic faces the next best man of 2016
Novak Djokovic has, naturally, claimed more wins than any other player on tour this year, 42 of them to be exact.
But who comes next? Yup. Dominic Theim on a stunning 41.
The rapidly-improving 22-year-old is enjoying the best year of his blossoming career, and has been rewarded for some sublime tennis in Paris with his first Grand Slam semi-final.
Thiem has played Djoko twice before, and lost twice before, but this will be their first meeting on the dirt.
The Austrian has needed four sets in four of his five matches, while the world number one has dropped just one so far. Thiem is on to big things, but Djokovic should prove too much here.
Best Bet: Djokovic to win 3-0 @ 8/15
Muguruza’s stock set to rise, but only after Stosur battle
There may be 10 years between them, but Garbine Muguruza versus Sam Stosur could be a riveting encounter.
The 22-year-old Muguruza has been superb since dropping the opening set in her first round clash, winning her last four matches in straights including two bagles.
Sam Stosur on the other hand has used all of her guile and experience to reach her first Slam semi since the 2012 French Open.
The Aussie’s victory over Simona Halep was particularly impressive, and Stosur won her only previous meeting with Muguruza, on clay two years go.
Stosur is seeking a third career Slam final, but it’s the Spaniard who should have the edge here as she continues her rapid rise.
Best Bet: Muguruza to win 2-1 @ 3/1
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.