The French Open has proven to be a difficult stage for several seeds in both the men’s and women’s draw so far and there is every chance more high-profile names will be exiting the tournament on Friday.
In the men’s side of the tournament, world number one Novak Djokovic, ‘King of Clay’ Rafael Nadal and reigning US Open champion Dominic Thiem have all looked impressive and the trio are safely into the third round.
Seeds Sent Packing Early Doors
However, fourth seed Daniil Medvedev was knocked out in the opening round, losing to Marton Fucsovics, while Gael Monfils, David Goffin, Fabio Fognini, Felix Auger-Aliassime and Borna Coric all fell at the first hurdle.
As things stand, it is all gearing up for a showdown between Nadal, who is the
5/4 favorite to triumph in Paris for a record-extending 13th time, and
8/5 chance Djokovic in the final, although
7/2 Thiem will be hoping to have something to say about the matter.
Swiss Star Enjoying Resurgence
Swiss star Stan Wawrinka has been somewhat of a surprise package after reaching the third round of the tournament, beating Andy Murray and Dominik Koepfer to reach this stage, and he will take on wildcard Hugo Gaston next.
The 35-year-old, who has won the Australian, French and US Open during his career, has struggled for consistency over the past few years but he will see this as a great chance to extend his stay in Paris.
Women’s Draw Wide Open
If you thought the men’s seeds were falling at a rate, then you haven’t been paying close enough attention to the women’s side of the tournament, where former world number one Serena Williams’ withdrawal made the headlines.
The American battled through her first-round clash, beating compatriot Kristie Ahn, but the 39-year-old was forced to pull out ahead of her second-round match due to an Achilles injury.
Johanna Konta and Victoria Azarenka had already suffered shock exits before that announcement and there was another surprise defeat on Thursday, with Karolina Pliskova losing in straight sets to 2017 champion Jelena Ostapenko.
Although seeded second, Pliskova has struggled for any real consistency since the tournament began and her search for a maiden Grand Slam continues, with defeat in the 2016 US Open her best result to date.
All Set Up for Halep?
With high-profile names tumbling around her, there are suggestions top seed Simona Halep will be able to land her second French Open title, having triumphed at Roland Garros in 2018.
The Romanian, who also won at Wimbledon in 2019, is yet to drop a set from her first two matches and will now take on 25th seed Amanda Anisimova in round three.
These two did meet in the quarter-finals last year and it was Anisimova who managed to come out on top on that occasion, so Halep knows the danger her opponent possesses and will be eager to gain revenge.
*All odds correct at time of writing