Kei Nishikori v Andrey Kuznetsov
Both Kei Nishikori and Andrey Kuznetsov came through First Round matches without breaking too much of a sweat. Now they meet in the Second Round and Nishikori is unsurprisingly a strong favourite to progress, a worthy place for the Number 5 Seed in Roland Garros.
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It has taken Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic (twice) to end Kei Nishikori’s runs on the clay courts so far this season and Kuznetsov is not up to that level. I do think the Russian is a solid player but I am also of the belief that he is better on the faster surfaces and that is where I think Nishikori will have the edge in the contest.
Some of the defeats that Kuznetsov has had on the surface has shown his limitations on the clay and Nishikori is more than good enough to expose those. He will be under some pressure on the serve, but Nishikori has the return to really hurt Kuznetsov too.
I can see Nishikori coming through in straight sets in this one and I do think he can win one of those with a double break of serve. I like the World Number 5 to come through with a 63, 63, 64 win in this one.
Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Kei Nishikori -7.5 Games at 1.95 with Betfair Exchange
Richard Gasquet v Bjorn Fratangelo
Winning the Savannah Challenger helped Bjorn Fratangelo earn his way into the main draw at the French Open. He surprised Sam Querrey in the First Round, but it is a big ask for Fratangelo to get past Richard Gasquet who had been in good form in seeing off a dangerous Thomaz Bellucci.
The home favourite will have all the support behind him and should have the clay court experience to make this another fairly comfortable day in the office.
It has to be said that Fratangelo has had some solid results on the clay at the Challenger level. That means he will be anything but a pushover, but Gasquet is a considerable step up from the normal level of competition he faces and is also someone who has won plenty of matches on the surface.
Some of the defeats and the margin of those defeats that Fratangelo has suffered in the last few weeks on the clay would be a big worry for me. If Gasquet is serving well enough, he should have enough in the locker to come through with a 63, 62, 64 win.
Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Richard Gasquet – 8.5 Games at 2.02 with Matchbook
John Isner v Kyle Edmund
Not many people would have been surprised that John Isner needed a couple of tie-breakers on his way through to the Second Round. It was a tough match against John Millman and Kyle Edmund should pose more questions as he has plenty of good experiences to fall back upon on the clay courts.
Edmund won a title on the clay courts during the last few weeks, albeit at Challenger level, and he should be able to give Isner plenty to think about if he is serving well. However the big question is whether Edmund can deal with the monster Isner serve which can be a huge weapon even on this surface.
Both Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer would be the first to tell you that and Isner is a big challenge for the young British player to overcome. The big serve can build pressure on his opponents and Isner has managed to eventually find the breaks of serve he need as the matches go into the third and fourth sets.
I expect that to be the case here as Isner perhaps wins a couple of tie-breakers before finding a late break of serve to help him get over this number. I do think the American is the likely winner of the match with his experience and bigger weapons keeping Edmund on the defensive, but it might be a fairly long match with those tie-breakers likely being key.
Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: John Isner -2.5 Games at 1.96 with Eastbridge
Prices correct at time of writing.