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Saturday, 6 June 2015

French Open Day 15 Picks 2015- Men's Final: Novak Djokovic v Stan Wawrinka (June 7th)

The women's Final is in the books and Serena Williams has reached Number 20 in terms of Grand Slams won which is a remarkable achievement. For a long time it had looked like the Final would be a fairly straight-forward one for Williams, but the American got nervous and Lucie Safarova maintained control of her emotions to come back from a double break down in the second set and broke serve once again when Serena Williams served for the match at 6-5.

Safarova impressively broke, won the tie-breaker and was then 2-0 up in the decider, but Williams once again discovered her form and won the final six games to take home the title for a third time in Paris.

The season Grand Slam is on, which would help Serena Williams match Steffi Graf's 22 Grand Slam titles, although other players will feel they can 'get her' early in the next two Grand Slam tournaments.

Personally it is hard to see how Serena Williams is going to be stopped in her two favourite Slams, especially if she can go into Wimbledon and the US Open healthy, but she will be a very short price to win those, too short for me in all likelihood.

So the final day at the French Open is when Novak Djokovic, who eventually saw off Andy Murray in their delayed Semi Final on Saturday, and Stan Wawrinka go for their first French Open title.

Serena Williams might have every chance to win the season Grand Slam, but Novak Djokovic might be a strong favourite to do the same if he takes the title home on Sunday. This is the one he has coveted more than any other as Djokovic could join an elite list of players who have won the career Grand Slam.

Not many would oppose Novak Djokovic in the next two Slams either, although Andy Murray showed he is getting closer and prefers Wimbledon and the US Open where he has won his two Slams and could be the big threat to Djokovic going forward.

First things first, Djokovic has to hold off Stan Wawrinka who is a surprise Finalist here and had a full day of rest going into the Final while the World Number 1 was toiling against Murray on Saturday. The Final could be a good one if Wawrinka can bring in the form that has troubled Novak Djokovic in the past, but he will have to serve better than he did in the Semi Final to make this a classic for the fans.

Novak Djokovic-Stan Wawrinka Over 3.5 Sets: If you had watched the two men's Semi Finals from start to finish, you would have noticed that Stan Wawrinka had given up a host of chances for Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to break serve in the last three sets which may have changed the entire direction of the match if the Frenchman could have taken his chances.

On the other hand, Novak Djokovic created a lot of chances on the Andy Murray serve, but wasn't effective enough during sets three and four to make that an easier day in the office. However, the World Number 1 has to be happy with his serving having only given up break points in three games during the entire five set match, although Murray raised his game at those times to break every time an opportunity presented itself.

I said on Friday that Wawrinka would have a really hard time winning the French Open if he doesn't improve his serving because Tsonga is a fairly limited returner, yet was creating chances at will. Now he takes on Djokovic, likely a top five returner of all time, who will keep the Swiss Number 2 on the backfoot on his own service games if Wawrinka is not hitting his marks.

Blisters on his hands are a concern too, but the fact that Djokovic had to come out on Saturday may help Wawrinka feel he can physically compete. The other element that has made Wawrinka a dangerous opponent is his shot-making off both wings off the ground and he will need all of that to hit through Djokovic who defends as good as anybody in the World.

That power can cause Djokovic some problems even when he is serving though as Wawrinka will look to attack the serve and I do think the latter can have some success. There will be nerves on Djokovic's side of the court knowing how close he is to achieving his dream and matches between these two have been gruelling affairs at the highest level in recent years.

What do I mean? Well about the fact their last four Grand Slam matches have all gone to five sets and they have also met in a Davis Cup tie which also needed five sets to separate them. Novak Djokovic has gotten the best of the majority of these five setters as his fitness has seen him outlast Wawrinka, but don't discount the latter who was beaten 12-10 at the Australian Open in the fifth set in 2013 only to return the favour in a 9-7 final set in 2014 at the same venue.

I do think Novak Djokovic is going to be too strong for Stan Wawrinka, but even a World Number 1 can get nervous when closing on history as Serena Williams showed on Saturday. That will give Wawrinka a chance to make this a competitive match if he can start well and I think the layers are taking a chance on this match seeing both players win at least one set.

If Novak Djokovic returns well it could be tough for Wawrinka and it won't be super hot on Sunday which suits the Serb just fine. However, the latter will believe in his game being competitive and that can see him take a set and it would be beyond stunning if the Swiss man was to win this in straight sets.

At odds against, I will look for this match to last at least four sets between two players who have played some epic Grand Slam matches over the last two and a half years.

MY PICKS: Novak Djokovic-Stan Wawrinka Over 3.5 Sets @ 2.10 Paddy Power (2 Units)

French Open Update: 46-33, + 19.70 Units (155 Units Staked, + 12.71% Yield)

1 comment:

  1. Novak Djokovic reaches semi-finals ATP BNP Paribas Open tennis semifinal. Watch Novak and Wawrinka ATP BNP Paribas Open tennis semifinal at Paris Masters Nov 7 2015, at 9:00 PM. Watch Novak Djokovic VS Wawrinka - ATP BNP Paribas Live