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Shock: Murray not the greatest threat to big two at French Open

| 20.05.2015

The men’s French Open title has basically been a procession for one man over the past decade, but 2015’s edition promises to be the most competitive in years, with many players vying to bring Rafael Nadal’s dynasty tumbling down.

Chief among the protagonists to relieve Nadal of the crown he’s worn for the past five, and in nine of the last 10 years, is world number one and strong 8/11 favourite Novak Djokovic.

Looking to land a Career Slam, Djokovic has never looked better placed to do just that ahead of the French, after a flawless clay season to date.

Djokovic has beaten much of the competition, including Nadal, en route to the Monte Carlo and Rome titles – so bravery is required to back against the super Serb.

Many will see Nadal’s price of 3/1 too tempting to pass up despite four successive failures on dirt this season, considering his unrivalled pedigree at Roland Garros.

However, far more will see his Madrid Masters conqueror as the man to throw their wallet behind after an unexpectedly successful showing on his worst surface in the spring.

Andy Murray is next in the betting at 8/1 and having claimed 10 straight wins, and two titles, before pulling out of the Italian Open owing to ‘fatigue’, the Brit will be seen as the biggest threat to the men perched above him in the betting.

However, it would still be a herculean effort from the world number three who is yet to make the showpiece in Paris and has only just claimed his first ATP titles on the red stuff as he turns 28.

Instead, it’s 16/1-shot and world number five Kei Nishikori who is tipped to rock some boats at another major, after going all the way to the final at the US Open last year.

The Japanese star is starting to make an impact on this surface, having successfully defended his Barcelona title, before losing out to an inspired Murray in the semis of Madrid.

Nishikori’s exceptional forehand is a clay-court weapon to be reckoned with, which was evidenced when he took a set off Djokovic in Rome, a feat neither David Ferrer (25/1) or Roger Federer (20s) could manage at the tournament.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.