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Spanish stars favourites to make French Open semi-finals

| 06.06.2012

Tournament favourite Rafael Nadal takes part in an all-Spanish French Open quarter-final on Wednesday, with the 26-year-old expected to comfortably progress, at 1/25 to beat compatriot Nicolas Almagro.

Nadal is in blistering form in Paris, winning 17 games in succession en route to besting a Roland Garros record that has been in place since 1982.

Said record was the number of game losses within a player’s first four matches at the French Open, and Nadal’s 19 defeats in that time is the fewest since Guillermo Vilas 30 years ago.

His opponent Almagro, 9/1 for success, has yet to lose a set in the tournament, though with every game it seems more and more likely that Nadal will claim a record seventh French Open crown.

He won 6-2, 6-0, 6-0 en route to victory over Juan Monaco, a player deemed a big threat beforehand, and should have far too much class for Almagro on Wednesday too.

Elsewhere at Roland Garros meanwhile, another Spaniard is hopeful of progression, with David Ferrer 8/15 favourite to overcome Great Britain’s Andy Murray.

Ferrer is playing some of the finest tennis of his career, also failing to drop a set as of yet, and seemingly determined to reach a Roland Garros semi-final for the first time in his career.

The head-to-head record between these competitors reads 5-4 in Murray’s favour, and so it could surprise some punters to see the Scot as 6/4 underdog to make the French Open semi-final for the second year running.

However, punters should pay attention to the nature of Murray’s advancement to this stage in the tournament.

Seemingly far from fully fit, Murray called his trainer on-court to tend to back troubles during a second round tie against Finnish veteran Jarkko Nieminen.

He was more impressive against Frenchman Richard Gasquet, following the first set, but needs to discover greater consistency on the clay surface.

Ferrer is a player definitely capable of forcing Murray to make errors, and with the Scotsman short of full fitness, the Spaniard could prove a better bet at 8/15 to make the semi-final.



John Klee