Men's 2021 French Open Tennis Betting Odds, Tips & Top Bets
- Dominic Thiem E/W to win outright - 12/1 with bet365
- Casper Ruud E/W to win outright - 50/1 with Unibet
Two of the outstanding players of this, or indeed any, generation head the betting for the 2021 Men’s French Open at Roland Garros.
After going out in the Madrid quarter-finals to eventual winner Alex Zverev, Rafael Nadal bounced back in style to beat Novak Djokovic in the Italian Open final in Rome. The Spaniard had a big scare early on, however, trailing a set and 0-3 to Denis Shapovalov before turning things around.
Nadal then avenged his Madrid defeat to Zverev before accounting for Reilly Opelka, both in straight sets. And in a bruising encounter in the final, he needed three sets to overcome his perennial Serbian rival.
It was also an encouraging week for Djokovic who, after surprise defeats to Dan Evans and Aslan Karatsev, reached his first final since claiming his ninth Australian Open title in February. He overpowered Nadal 6-1 in the second set, and had two break points for 3-2 in the decider before the King of Clay roared back to take it 6-3.
2021 French Open Men’s Odds
How World Rankings Impact French Open Seedings
The French Open sticks rigidly to the world rankings so Djokovic will be top seed despite having just one title to Nadal’s 13. And unless Roland Garros breaks with precedent, Nadal will be seeded third behind Daniil Medvedev - who has failed to make it past round one in four attempts - with Dominic Thiem fourth.
With Madrid form always best taken with a hefty pinch of salt given its altitude and pace through the air which favours big servers, Nadal is a worthy favourite. But, at odds-on with the best tennis betting sites, he simply cannot be a betting proposition. He has shown enough vulnerability this season, in defeat to Andrey Rublev in Monte Carlo, and early on against Shapovalov, to make him opposable. Let’s also not forget that he turns 35 during the tournament and time must catch up with him eventually.
Djokovic and Nadal are seeded to meet in the semi-finals after the Spaniard was drawn in the top half. While number two seed Medvedev seeks to avoid a fifth consecutive first-round exit against Alexander Bublik.
This farce has improved the prospects for my selection, Dominic Thiem, who is in the weaker bottom half. However, the Austrian fell at the first hurdle in Lyon last week against Cameron Norrie.
Time For Thiem
Regular readers will know I don’t need too much persuading to back Thiem in big tournaments. He has not been in the best form of late although losing in the Madrid semis to Zverev was no disgrace, and I’m prepared to forgive his defeat to home favourite Lorenzo Sonego in Rome. Play was delayed after Thiem took the second-set tiebreak to empty the stands in accordance with the city’s Covid curfew, enabling Sonego to regroup somewhat. He is playing in Lyon this week to get some more match practice in before Paris.
Crucially, Thiem now has a Slam under his belt. Yes, Nadal was absent and Djokovic defaulted at last year’s US Open, but the pressure that was on the Austrian previously is no longer there. The exertions of that New York success told as he went out in the quarter-finals at Roland Garros last October.
The best-of-five sets suits Thiem and a Slam gives him time to play his way into form in the early rounds, the current 12/1 looks too big a price with our best betting sites and he makes more appeal than Nadal at odds-on. I don’t think the world number one is bad value at 9/2 with bet365, but I believe two-time finalist Thiem is the man to back at double figure odds.
Bottom Half of the Draw Looks Wide Open
The big winner from the draw is Stefanos Tsitsipas who has landed in Medvedev’s fourth quarter. The Greek is a best price at 11/2 with Unibet (from 8/1) and looks to have a pretty easy route to the semi-finals.
If Thiem remains out of sorts then Casper Ruud could be the one to take advantage in the third quarter. The Norwegian won last week’s Geneva Open after reaching the semi-finals in Monte Carlo and Madrid. He beat Tsitsipas in Madrid so would have nothing fear were they to meet again in the semis. At Casper Ruud E/W to win outright - 50/1 with Unibet, he looks seriously overpriced and is well worth an each-way punt as well as support in the ‘to win third quarter’ market.
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