French Open 2021 Betting

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Welcome to the Ultimate French Open Betting Guide!

The French Open is the second of the four Grand Slam tournaments and the only one played on clay, making it a unique tennis betting test. It is held at Roland Garros in Paris and takes place over two weeks starting in late May and is a key date in for tennis betting fans.

With 128 players in each singles main draw, the Grand Slams offer the most matches and the most opportunities for tennis bettors to make money over the space of a fortnight.

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French Open Betting Tips

Understanding French Open Betting

Soon after the French Open has been completed, outright (to win the tournament) odds will be available with the best tennis betting sites for the following year’s event. Expect to see the finalists and past winners very much to the fore of the betting.

These odds will change a little due to subsequent Grand Slam results but the most activity is occurs in the month before the French Open when the European clay-court season is up and running. There is a men’s Masters event in Monte-Carlo and a women’s Premier Mandatory event in Stuttgart before the two main warm-up competitions - the Madrid Open and the Italian Open.

Betting on Clay-Court Tennis

As well as being the slowest of all surfaces, clay makes the ball bounce highest. This means winners are hard to come by with long baseline rallies the norm. The French Open is a serious test of stamina but without the jarring and muscle strain of hard courts. Matches lasting in excess of five hours for the men, who play best-of-five sets at Grand Slams, are not uncommon.

There are plenty of opportunities and markets, pre-match and in-play. As well as the winner of a match, you can bet on the winner of a specified set, the match score, the score in a set, even the score or number of points in a game.

With 128 players in the main draw, there are also a plethora of markets other than outright. Popular bets include which player will win their quarter of the draw, odds on a player to reach the final, and naming the two finalists. For top players, there may be odds available on how far they will get.

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Factors to Consider When Betting on the French Open

The slow speed of clay courts is crucial when betting on the French Open with the surface favouring baseline sluggers over more attacking players. A strong serve, such a potent weapon on faster surfaces, is rendered less effective on clay.

This makes holding serve far more difficult on clay than anywhere else. The ball sits up nicely and a top-class returner can put pressure on the server. With long rallies the standard, athletic ability is key. A top clay-court player can scramble across the baseline forever, and keep the ball deep in order to try and force the error.

Learning to slide and move on clay takes practice, and the courts are conducive to spin making drop shots and kick serves particularly effective. The ‘moonball’ - a high looping shot landing near the baseline and bouncing up towards the opponent’s head - can also be a useful tactic.

Making winners is not easy due to the slow surface, but having a blistering forehand like Rafael Nadal (12 French Open titles and counting) helps. Even so, that shot only usually becomes a winner when the opponent is out of position.

As Roger Federer said after finally winning the French Open in 2009, “On clay you don't need to have a volley. You almost don't need to have a serve. All you need to have is legs, an incredible forehand and backhand and to run things down.”

French Open Betting Tips and Strategy

Don’t Expect Tiebreaks

Find One-Sided Encounters

Cross out Players with Injury Worries

Watch First, Bet Later

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Rafael Nadal is the French Open Master

Who won't be playing at this years French Open

Where can I watch the French Open

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Previous French Open Winners

YearMen's WinnerMen's Runner-UpScore
2020Rafael NadalNovak Djokovic6–0, 6–2, 7–5
2019Rafael NadalDominic Thiem6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-1
2018Rafael NadalDominic Thiem6-4, 6-3, 6-2
2017Rafael NadalStan Wawrinka6-2, 6-3, 6-1
2016Novak DjokovicAndy Murray3-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4
2015Stan WawrinkaNovak Djokovic4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4
2014Rafael NadalNovak Djokovic3–6, 7–5, 6–2, 6–4
YearWomen's WinnerWomen's Runner-UpScore
2020Iga ŚwiątekSofia Kenin6-4, 6-1
2019Ashleigh BartyMarketa Vondrousova6-1, 6-3
2018Simona HalepSloane Stephens3–6, 6–4, 6–1
2017Jelena OstapenkoSimona Halep4–6, 6–4, 6–3
2016Garbine MuguruzaSerena Williams7–5, 6–4
2015Serena WilliamsLucie Safarova6-3, 6-7, 6-2
2014Maria SharapovaSimona Halep6-4, 6-7, 6-4

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The French Open is played at Stade Roland-Garros which is in Paris, the capital of France. The facility was first opened in 1928 to host the defence of the Davis Cup.

The 2021 French Open is scheduled to start on Sunday May 23rd, although qualifying matches will take place the week before. The ladies final will take place on June 5th, while the men's final will be contested the day after.

Yes, all of the best tennis betting sites will offer markets on the French Open. Punters can choose from a variety of markets, with matches taking place daily up until the finals.

Of the current four Grand Slam tournaments, the French Open is the only one played on clay.

Rafael Nadal has won the tournament on 13 occasions, 7 more times than any other player.

More French Open Tips


Hi, I'm Dean Ryan

"A passionate sports betting broadcaster and journalist with over 15 years spent in the gambling industry."

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