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Sunday, 20 January, 2019

It’s way too soon to pension off former clay ace Ferrer

Alexandrova and Rybarikova can showcase talent in Paris

David Ferrer is not as good as he once was
1 of 1

Eurosport 1 &2/ITV4, 9.30am Thursday

Ferrer v Lopez

David Ferrer has been struggling this year and it looks as if age is finally catching up with one of the fittest players in tennis.

As a result, Feliciano Lopez has been backed to upset one of the best players never to win the French Open singles when the pair meet in the second round.

But before we dump the former world number three, 35, it may be worth punters remind­ing themselves just how good Ferrer was.

He has won 26 singles titles, of which 12 were on clay – and of course that figure would have been higher had it not been for the presence of Rafael Nadal. Four years ago Ferrer reached the Roland Garros final when only Nadal was his superior.

Class tends to come to the fore in the Paris Grand Slam and it may be too soon to take on Ferrer with Lopez, whose weakest surface has been clay.

D Ferrer
1pt 4-6 general


Alexandrova v Karolina Pliskova

It’s early days in the career of Ekaterina Alexandrova but the Russian looks decent judging by her efforts this season.

Factor into that the fact that clay is probably Karolina Plisk­ova’s weakest terrain and we actually have the ingredients for an upset.

Second seed Pliskova, a confirmed battler, is no mug on slow courts, though, so the best play could be to back the outsider with a start of 5.5 games.

E Alexandrova +5.5 games
1pt 11-10 Betfair, Paddy Power

Duque-Marino v Rybarikova

Mariana Duque-Marino made a fine start in Paris when ousting Irina-Camelia Begu 7-6 6-4, but the Colombian may have her work cut out by Maggie Rybarikova.

This is the Slovak's first tournament of note since Wimble­don last summer, but judging by her 6-1 6-4 dismissal of Coco Vandeweghe in round one, there could be more to come.

M Rybarikova
1pt 13-10 bet365

Four years ago Ferrer reached the Roland Garros final when only Nadal was his superior
E.W. Terms
Sky bet