Serena Williams v Lucie Safarova at 14:00
There are two major questions that need to be answered in the women’s Final at Roland Garros on Saturday. The first is how much has Serena Williams been able to recover from the illness that clearly affected her in the first set of her Semi Final win over Timea Bacsinszky?
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The second is how well will Lucie Safarova deal with her first Grand Slam Final as a Singles competitor? She played well in her first Grand Slam Semi Final last year at Wimbledon before falling away against Petra Kvitova, but Safarova began nervously in her Semi Final against Ana Ivanovic.
One additional factor that is perhaps being underplayed is that Safarova was involved in the Doubles Semi Final with Bethanie Mattek-Sands on Friday and had to play three tough sets during the heart of the warm weather. Will that cause some fatigue to go with the inevitable nerves or will Safarova be able to keep control of her emotions both physically and mentally?
These are some tough questions to answer and we won’t really know how it will pan out until the match begins on Saturday. Serena Williams would be a big favourite in normal circumstances, but the layers are unsure about her fitness and that means she looks an attractive pick in the Final.
I really like Safarova she seems to be a nice person, but someone who is finally making use of all the weapons she has been afforded. She has served well through the tournament and straight set wins over Maria Sharapova, Garbine Muguruza and Ana Ivanovic is an impressive run of results. Of course Serena Williams is a level above all of those performers when at her best, but that is where the first question brings in the doubts.
Safarova is playing well enough to give Williams a lot of problems regardless of the health of the latter as long as she doesn’t let the occasion get to her. I’m not a fan of her being out in the Paris brutal heat for as long as she was in the Doubles Semi Final on Friday and Williams has found a way to break down Safarova with her additional power in past matches.
The way that Williams was serving in her match with Bacsinszky was also inspiring for those who think the American is going to win her 20th Grand Slam title and I do believe the day off might have helped Serena find the strength to win this match.
I can see it being a competitive Final, but I think Williams’ power has helped her out of some difficult spots and her experience is tough for Safarova to replicate. While there are factors we can’t possibly determine at the moment, I believe Williams might have come through her most difficult moments at Roland Garros and can win her second title in three years here in a tough 75, 63 win.
Tennis Handicap Pick: Serena Williams -3.5 Games at 1.81 with Eastbridge Sports Betting Brokerage
Price correct at the time of writing.