French Open last 16: Djokovic has Gasquet game, Nadal plays Sock


Everyone is expecting to see a dream quarter-final in the French Open men’s singles at Roland Garros between world number one Novak Djokovic and ‘the King of Clay’ Rafael Nadal.

Coral reckon the winner of this clay court Grand Slam shall come from that top section of the draw, with Serbian star Djokovic the odds-on 4/5 favourite and nine-time winner Nadal behind him at 7/2.

Before this stellar tennis names can contemplate renewing their rivalry, though, they must negotiate their last 16 matches. Djokovic has home hope Richard Gasquet in his way, but holds a dominant 10-1 head-to-head record over the Frenchman.

As a result, the Serb is an overwhelming odds-on 1/33 favourite for another victory in this fixture. Djokovic dispensed with Gasquet easily in straight sets at this stage of Roland Garros back in 2011, and is 2/7 to do so again.

Much to the delight of the French crowd, Gasquet came through a tough examination by South Africa’s Kevin Anderson in four sets, but a success rate of just nine per cent against Djokovic more than justifies a rank outsider price of 11/1 to reach the quarters here.

Nadal, meanwhile, is somehow the sixth seed despite the Spaniard going for ‘La Decima’ at this year’s French Open. There’s a first-ever meeting with American youngster Jack Sock, who will be brimming with confidence after his opening round giant-killing of Grigor Dimitrov.

He should not lose heart at taking a hiding from Nadal here, as the clay court champion is showing signs of steadily improving after injury. It’s only 1/14, relatively modest odds for a modern era icon of tennis, that Nadal beats Sock, who is a 7/1 shot to inflict another monumental defeat on a top seed.

Straight sets wins for Nadal over compatriot Nicolas Almagro and Andrey Kuznetsov suggest a pattern is once again emerging, and it’s 2/5 Sock is put down without the Spanish star dropping a set.

Coral betting tip: We’re backing Nadal to go all the way at Roland Garros and wrap up a 10th French Open title at 7/2.

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