French Open 2012, week 2 Wednesday

Quarter finals continue. Its unlikely that they are able to top yesterday’s but you never know.

 

Kanepi v Sharapova:

They have never played before.

Sharapova was less than impressive in her 4th round match with Zakopalova. Both were terrible on serve with 7 breaks in the first set, 10 in the second set and a further 4 in the third. Sharapova held serve just 3 times in the first 2 sets.

Kanepi has been serving well so far. Her problems start when she gets her nose in front. Having won the first set against Rus 6-1 she was then broken 3 times in the 2nd set including when she served at 4-5 to stay in the set. Against Wozniacki in the 3rd round she again started well and won 6-1 in the first. In the second set she was a double break up at 5-2 but somehow managed to lose the set on a tie break. In both matches she sorted herself out in the third sets.

Sharapova starts at 1.28 but if Kanepi can make another good start then that price could go a lot higher. Sharapova doesn’t deal well with windy conditions as she had in the Zakopalova match. The weather has also been colder than you’d expect for June and she has looked even more miserable than usual.

Even if Kanepi take s a lead in the first set or even takes the set this will come down to who is tougher mentally. If you had to pick which player would fold you would choose Kanepi every time.

Both have a good recent record in third sets but there aren’t many  players ahead of  Sharapova on the WTA tour that you would want your money on in a tough match .

I’d need a better price before backing at the start though and the way she served the other day I think we have a good chance of seeing 1.60 in the early games.

Update: Kanepi didn’t really compete.

Sharapova won 6-2, 6-3.

 

Ferrer v Murray:

Head to heads are 5-4 in Murrays favour. Ferrer has won all 3 of their previous clay court matches although the last was in 2010.

Ferrer and Nadal are the only players who haven’t looked vulnerable in this tournament. To be fair he has had an easy run to the quarter finals with potentially his toughest opponent, Youzhny, just not able to compete with Ferrer on clay.

Murray has had the usual injury scares that we seem to expect from him. Even the French crowd were getting tired of it though and when he was in trouble against Gasquet and started feeling his lower back they were stopping  just short of throwing their seats at the Scot. Gasquet didn’t know how to handle the volatile atmosphere and it affected his game. Murray played some amazing tennis once he stopped pissing about. Lendl should give him a damn good kicking although he may already have done so which would explain the sore back.

Murray has improved a great deal on clay and improved his game over all. This will be his biggest test of just how much he has improved but if he can play as he did towards the end of the Gasquet match then he is in with a great chance.

Ferrer won’t be adversely affected by the crowd whether they are for him or against him. As Murray knocked out Gaquet they are perhaps more likely to want Ferrer to win but any player who hits balls at crying babies doesn’t give a stuff about what the spectators think of him.

This could be a classic ( though each time I say that it usually isn’t!) but I think Murray takes it in 4 or 5 sets.

Update: Well as I said Murray needed to find the level he had against Gasquet to have a chance but today he just didn’t perform. Five times he broke Ferrer’s serve and then gave his own away in the very next game.

Ferrer won 6-4, 6-7, 6-3, 6-2.

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