The 2017 French Open is scheduled to kick off May 22nd, and conclude with the Women’s Final taking place June 10th and the Men’s on the 11th. The infamous clay court Grand Slam is the second of the ATP World Tour, after the Australian Open which we covered earlier in the month.
Last year, then-world number one Novak Djokovic trounced current number one Andy Murray in the final, sealing his 12th Grand Slam victory but only his first French Open. Serena Williams suffered an upset loss to Garbiñe Muguruza in straight sets, giving the young Spaniard her first Grand Slam title.
May is a long way away, but let’s take a look at the early favorites. We’ll update you on the odds as the season progresses.
Odds To Win 2017 Men’s French Open:
Novak Djokovic: 5/4
The defending champion is favored over Andy Murray to take the French Open. In head-to-head action, Djokovic has defeated Murray 24 of the 35 times the two have met. That includes a 5-1 record on clay. Djokovic will be hellbent on taking back the number one spot, and winning the French Open would be a huge step towards that.
Andy Murray: 4/1
The current number one is at a slight disadvantage against Djokovic on clay, having only beaten him once of the five times they’ve met. Last year was the first time Murray reached the final of the French Open, but as his clay court record shows, this type of surface isn’t one of his strengths.
Rafael Nadal: 5/1
Nadal withdrew from the 2016 French Open in the third round after suffering a wrist injury. Overall, 2016 was a pretty disastrous season for the Spaniard. He didn’t appear at Wimbledon and was eliminated in the first round of the Aussie Open. But Nadal thrives on clay, having won the French Open nine times in his career. And if he can regain his form, this could be his tenth.
Odds To Win 2017 Women’s French Open:
Serena Williams: 9/4
Serena Williams only dropped one set leading up to the final of the French Open, but an in-form Garbiñe Muguruza defeated her in straight sets, denying her the prize. Williams also fell in the final of the Australian Open, making it the first time she had lost back-to-back Grand Slam finals.
As usual, she will return in 2017 as the favorite. But there are serious questions as to whether this is the end of her dominance in the sport.
Garbine Muguruza: 5/1
Muguruza was having a pretty mediocre season before turning it around to win the French Open last year. As mentioned, she faced Williams, who she lost to in the Wimbledon final the year before, and swept the sets. She may be the defending champion, but she still stands as a clear underdog against Williams
Simona Halep: 11/1
Simona Halep is a dark horse in women’s tennis. She has yet to win her first Grand Slam title, but has come fairly close a number of times. The young Romanian is one of the most exciting players to watch at the moment and is also one of the most rapidly improving.
Photo credit: “Untitled” by Simon Boyes CC BY-SA 2.0 [http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0], via Flickr.