The French Open is a major tennis tournament held in Paris annually and one of the four Grand Slam events on the tennis calendar. Also known as Roland Garros in honour of the French aviator of the same name, the French Open is the largest and most prestigious tournament during the clay court season. It is also the only Grand Slam played on clay courts – the US Open and Australian Open are played on hard courts, while the famed Wimbledon is a lawn tournament. The French Open is the pinnacle of the clay court season – due to the slow courts and best-of-five matches, it’s also very physically demanding and among the hardest tournaments to be won.
The tournament was found 122 years ago in 1891 as the Championnat de France. In the beginning, it was open to players from French clubs only, with H. Briggs, a Briton with residence in Paris, winning the first title. The Championnat de France was initially conceived as a men’s tennis tournament before adding a Women’s singles tournament sometime later and women and mixed doubles events afterward. The “French club members only” rule stayed active until 1925 when the tournament opened to international amateurs and came under the rule of ILTF. After being played on alternating locations in the beginning, the tournament found its future venue in 1928 at the Stade Roland Garros, where it is still held today.
The most successful player in Roland Garros is Spaniard Rafael Nadal, who won his record 11th title in 2018. Over the years, Roland Garros has been the witness of exquisite matches between the top tennis players in the world. Finals between Nadal, Djokovic, and Federer, the most dominant players in the past decade (and more), have attracted millions of fans, and the prize purse of nearly 40 million Euros shows that the French Open is among the biggest tournaments in tennis.
Can Rafa Nadal Continue His Dominance?
What can be said about Rafa Nadal at the French Open that hasn’t been said before? The Spanish tennis player is widely regarded as the best clay court tennis player in history and he has the titles to prove it. With a whopping 11 wins to his name, it’s only natural for Nadal to be the bookie favourite for next year’s French Open, and a massive one at that. Nadal’s 11 titles put him on top of the list of French Open champions, with only Max Decugis’ 8 behind him, although they all came before the Open Era. If you compare Nadal’s impressive record with today’s top tennis players, he puts everyone to shame – Djokovic and Federer have won at Roland Garros only once in their illustrious careers.
Nadal will probably be the main favourite for the French Open for the rest of his career. For next year’s tournament, Mansion Bet and Ole777 have the Spaniard at odds of 20/23, Mintbet is giving him odds of 19/20, while Novibet has Nadal at 20/21. This shows that Rafa Nadal is once again a heavy favourite for the 2019 Roland Garros, just like he’s been in the past 10 years or so.
Even if he misses half of the season due to injuries, Nadal will most likely make a run to the final and will be given huge chances to win the trophy. From a bookie’s point of view, however, these odds are not really attractive. If you’re planning on earning some money on the 2019 French Open, your best bet lies somewhere else.
Can Djokovic Win the Title Once Again?
If Nadal doesn’t play at the French Open next year or he’s surprisingly outed early, Novak Djokovic is the next major favourite in line to win. The Serbian is coming off quite a successful season, where he managed to win at Wimbledon and the US Open as well as many other ATP tournaments. Traditionally, Djokovic plays great on all courts including clay, and he’s always among the players to beat at the French Open. With Roger Federer’s probable omission, Djokovic is the second-top favourite for the 2019 French Open, and rightfully so.
Novak Djokovic is being given odds of 33/10 to win the tournament at Mansion Bet and Ole777, 10/3 at Mintbet, and 4/1 at Novibet. He’s clearly the second biggest favourite besides Rafael Nadal, and considering the form he’s been into lately, we couldn’t agree more. Although the tournament is still some time off, we have no doubt that Djokovic will have a superb season. He’ll be a threat no matter who he plays against, even if it’s Rafael Nadal in the Roland Garros final.
Plus, his odds look much better than Nadal’s, so our money would be on him.
Can the Young Guard Finally Show Its Worth?
The ATP has been heavily criticized for the lack of young stars. Sure, there are great young players on the tour such as Dominic Thiem, Alexandar Zverev, and Nick Kyrgios, but none seem to have stepped outside the shadow of major champions such as Federer, Nadal, and Djokovic. Some experts would go so far to say that none of the great young players will win a Grand Slam unless the top 3 retire, although that’s pretty harsh in our opinion.
It seems that things have finally started to take a turn. Dominic Thiem played in last year’s French Open final, and although he lost to Nadal, he showed that he’s a clay court specialist who can take on anyone. On the other hand, the often-criticized Zverev won the ATP Finals not a few weeks ago, brushing Djokovic aside in a thrilling final where he was considered a heavy underdog. These tennis players are considered the future of tennis, but if they plan on becoming a tour-de-force like their older colleagues, they need to start winning now.
The good news is that Thiem and Zverev come right after Nadal and Djokovic on the bookie favourites list. Thiem is given odds of 9/1 at Mansion Bet, Mintbet, Ole777, and Novibet. When it comes to Zverev, his odds are either equal or a bit worse than Thiem’s – the German is available at 9/1 at Mintbet, 10/1 at Ole777 and Mansion Bet, and 39/4 at Novibet.
As you can see, the young guns are pretty close to each other, and their odds are great for punters. If you think that the time has finally come for the young stars to shine, you stand to earn a lot of money if they win the title next June.
Where Does Roger Federer Stand?
Like most experts, we think that Roger Federer is the greatest tennis player of all time. It’s not just about the 20 Grand Slam titles and 99 overall – it’s in his elegance and bag full of masterful plays. Roger Federer is tennis personified and we’re lucky to see him still competing at the age of 37.
In recent years, Federer has been experiencing a resurgence which saw him win 2 Australian Open titles and a record-breaking 8th Wimbledon title. What Rafa Nadal is to the French Open, Federer is to Wimbledon. However, if there’s one stain on his impeccable career, it’s his performance on clay court tournaments. Although he shouldn’t be dismissed as an opponent, clay courts are not Federer’s preferred choice of court, with the Swiss maestro only winning the French Open once.
In the past 2 years, he has skipped the clay court season including the French Open in order to prevent injuries, and he’s most likely to skip the 2019 edition once again. Still, bookies have placed the Grand Slam title leader in the list of favourites, just in case he decides to appear in front of the Paris crowd.
Roger Federer is 28/1 at Ole777 and Mansion Bet, 32/1 at Novibet, and 33/1 at Mintbet. These odds are mouthwatering for punters, and you can bet that he’s going to be a tough challenger if he decides to play. We really hope so, because we can’t get enough of his brilliance.