Friday, May 24, 2013

2013 FRENCH OPEN: Nadal & Djokovic In Same Half; Murray Out

The draw for the 2013 edition of the French Open has been released! With the news earlier in the week that World #3 Andy Murray was withdrawing from the tournament due to a back injury all eyes are on where World #4 (#3 seed and 7-time champion) Rafael Nadal would end up in the draw. It turns out that last year's champion is in the same half of the draw as World #1 Novak Djokovic, meaning that a reprise of last year's final is not possible, but a reprise of the 2011 final between Nadal and Roger Federer. The men's French Open tennis odds indicate that Nadal is the clear favorite against the field, with 8:11 odds. However, since a Djokovic-Nadal final is not going to happen, there are also odds for the various possible finals: Federer-Nadal (7:2), Ferrer-Nadal (11:2), Federer-Djokovic (17:2) and Ferrer-Djokovic (11:1). The possibility of some other combination is 8:11. So, curiously, the oddsmakers think that it is likely Nadal will win the tournament and they also think that it is just as likely that someone from the field will win the tournament. Federer has basically a dream draw and should have no problem reaching the quarterfinal against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

On the women's side of the drawdefending champion World #2 Maria Sharapova is in the other half of the draw from the clear favorite World #1 Serena Williams. World #3 (and 2013 Australian Open championVictoria Azarenka is in Sharapova's half of the draw, as are 2011 French Open champion Li Na and 2011 Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova.

Interesting first round match-ups are Aravane Rezai versus Kvitova, Caroline Wozniacki versus Laura Robson, Mona Barthel versus Angelique Kerber and 2009 French Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova versus Ekaterina Makarova.

On the men's side the first round matches to watch are Gael Monfils versus #5 seed Tomas Berdych, Milos Raonic versus Xavier Malisse, and Marcel Granollers and Feliciano Lopez.

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