This article is part of our Tennis Picks series.
While most Americans enjoy the day off for Memorial Day on Monday, some of the top tennis players from across the globe will be hard at work in France playing the fourth round of the French Open. A couple of American women have great opportunities to keep their runs going against opponents with less experience deep in majors, while prior clay-court success gives one guy the clear edge in the first career meeting between two players ranked near the top of the men’s game. All match odds below are taken from DraftKings Sportsbook, but you can sometimes find more favorable odds on some of these matches by checking other mobile sportsbooks such as FanDuel, BetMGM or Caesars.
How players performed throughout the clay-court season is important, but those results are overshadowed at this point by their play through three rounds at Roland Garros. The stakes are highest at the majors, and the men play best-of-five set matches rather than the best-of-three seen at other ATP Tour events. Conditions vary from tournament to tournament, and even from day to day, but clay generally plays slower than hard or grass, favoring players with better footwork, touch and ability to work the point rather than big servers. Using this context can help pinpoint intriguing betting opportunities, both among favorites likely to cruise to victory and underdogs ready to pull off upsets. The aforementioned underdogs are highlighted in the Upset Alert section, the Lock It In section covers players who can safely be considered overwhelming favorites, while the Value Bet section recommends enticing options in matchups that are considered closer to toss-ups.
This match will be played on Giorgi’s terms, as the offensive-minded Italian has the ability to take the racquet out of her opponent’s hands when she’s on her game. No. 7 seed Aryna Sabalenka found that out the hard way in her third-round loss to Giorgi, winning just one game over the last two sets. This will be a major step up in level of competition for Kasatkina, as 50th-ranked Shelby Rogers is the only top-150 opponent Kasatkina has faced up to this point, but Giorgi’s ranked just 10 spots below the Russian at No. 30.
Lock It In
Pegula’s up to 10-1 on clay this year against opponents ranked outside the top 10, and Begu’s well outside that elite range at No. 63 in the world. The 11th-ranked American has a great opportunity to ride this favorable draw into the quarterfinals. While the 31-year-old Romanian leads their career head-to-head 2-0, Pegula should be much more comfortable playing in the second week of a major. Begu is 0-2 in Grand Slam Round of 16 matches in her career, while Pegula’s actually 2-0 at this stage.
This will surprisingly be the first career meeting between two guys who have been top-15 mainstays for the past year. Hurkacz has shown he’s no slouch on clay, but Ruud’s unquestionably the more accomplished player on this surface. Ranked five spots ahead of Hurkacz at No. 8, Ruud’s 18-5 on clay this year with two titles on the surface. Those 18 wins match the total Hurkacz has on clay in his career, compared to 21 losses for the big-serving Pole.
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