Wawrinka slashed for French Open after Monte Carlo cash in
The 29-year-old is now as short as 7/1 to add the second Grand Slam of the year to his mantelpiece after securing his maiden Major at the Australian Open in January.
His unexpected run in Melbourne signalled a watershed moment for the Swiss star after spending all of his career in the shadow of countryman and Davis Cup partner Roger Federer.
Wawrinka had already been promoted to his nation’s number one by the time he met Federer in the Monaco final and the way he dismissed his former master in the deciding set gave the impression that the new order in Switzerland’s hierarchy was being officially established.
There is no doubt that the moons aligned kindly once more for Wawrinka after everything fell in place in Australia at the start of the year.
Down Under, the Swiss right-hander’s passage to a first Grand Slam was made considerably easier by an injury to Rafael Nadal in the final and it was a credit to the Spaniard that he refused to retire so not to tarnish Wawrinka’s happiest day.
The premature exits of Nadal and the Masters 1000 hat-trick chasing Novak Djokovic were significant in Monte Carlo, however, the mention of these facts is not intended to dilute the achievements.
Wawrinka had already overcome his demons to beat Djokovic in five sets and Tomas Berdych in Melbourne and the notion that drawing Federer in the final was lucky last week is quickly torpedoed when you see that the 17-time Grand Slam winner had won all 12 of their previous meetings.
As with many breakthrough successes a certain amount of fortune needs to be present but there is no doubt that any sympathetic turns of the wheel have been fully earned.
Although there has arguably been an overreaction to last weekend’s victory in the French Open betting, the trajectory of Wawrinka’s performances in Paris are extremely encouraging.
After getting knocked out to David Nalbandian in the first round eight years ago his length of stays in the French capital have been getting longer and longer with three round-of-16 finishes between 2010-12 achieved before his best ever result last year when making the last eight.
Crucially, all of those results were achieved with an inferior ranking where he was always likely to play one of the top-four before the semi-finals.
However, now the world number three has earned an easier route to the second week and any odds available on the Basle resident winning his quarter should be taken.
If the performances continue then the landscape of the Grand Slam fortnight will forever change for Wawrinka and his chances of adding more silverware at the highest level will improve enormously.
If anyone needed reminding so soon after his Australian Open heroics that Wawrinka was now among the world’s best they got it at the weekend and those waiting for a drop in form may have to wait until after the French at least.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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