Nadal cut for clay Slam after favourable draw
RAFAEL NADAL has been cut from 5-6 to 8-11 to retain his French Open crown after being given a dream draw on Friday.
Nadal already knew he would be in the opposite half to chief rival Novak Djokovic after securing his spot as the second seed with victory in the Rome Masters final on Monday.
However, Roger Federer and Juan Martin del Potro,the next two players in the betting, were also placed in the top half.
Nadal's nearest rivals in the bottom half are Andy Murray and David Ferrer, who are both a best-priced 40-1.
Indeed, the Spaniard may well not face a top-ten player until the semi-final stage. His likeliest quarter-final opponent appears to be Nicolas Almagro, who enjoyed a 6-3 6-1 romp past Gilles Simon to reach the Nice final yesterday but has struggled to produce his best on the big stage.
Victoria Azarenka got the best of the women's draw as favourite Serena Williams and defending champion Na Li were drawn in the bottom half alongside Maria Sharapova.
Azarenka was slashed from 9-2 to 7-2 but bookmakersare clearly wary of Williams because she held firm at 13-5 whereas Sharapova and Li drifted. Sam Stosur is 12-1 from 16-1.
Agnieszka Radwanska has also attracted support after she was drawn in the top half and reached Saturday's finalin Brussels, where she is due to face Simona Halep.
Francesca Schiavone will play Alize Cornet in the day's Strasbourg International final.
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