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Sunday, 18 November, 2018

Second-seeded Pliskova to march on comfortably

Garcia could triumph in all-French fourth-round rumble

Second seed Karolina Pliskova may be underrated on clay
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Day nine
ITV4 and Eurosport, from 10am

Cepede Royg v Karolina Pliskova
Veronica Cepede Royg has enjoyed the best tournament of her career at the French Open with wins over Lucie Safarova and Anastasia Pavlyu­chenkova, but the fun may end in Paris for the Paraguayan against second seed Karolina Pliskova.

Clay is probably Pliskova's weakest surface, but it's not as if the Czech is poor on the slow courts. Far from it, she's pretty accomplished and handily the Roland Garros draw has opened up nicely for her with Agnieszka Radwanska exiting the event in round three.

Cepede Royg turned it around well in a delayed last-32 clash against Mariana Duque-Marino yesterday, but Pliskova may be tougher to dominate than the Colombian.

Recommendation
Karolina Pliskova to win 2-0
2pts 4-6 general


Garcia v Cornet
Alize Cornet exposed the shortcomings of comeback queen Agnieszka Radwanska when dismissing the Pole 6-2 6-1 in round three, but the French­woman is no good thing to continue the fine work against her compatriot Caroline Garcia.

Things have gone a little quiet for Garcia of late, but she's still making headway and posted superb victories over Karolina Pliskova and Petra Kvitova in the Fed Cup in November.

Consistency is often a problem for the French WTA players, but Garcia may have sufficient ability to thwart Cornet.

Recommendation
C Garcia
1pt 11-10 general


Other matches
Andy Murray takes on Karen Khachanov, conqueror of Tomas Berdych and John Isner, for a place in the last eight and the world number one should find a way to win, although he may do well to triumph without dropping a set as was the case in his latest 7-6 7-5 6-0 victory over Juan Martin del Potro.

Fernando Verdasco has hit a rich vein of form in a run which has seen him defeat Rome champion Alexander Zverev, Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Pablo Cuevas and the seasoned Spaniard is good enough to make life tough for Kei Nishikori.

Marin Cilic should add to his 5-1 personal series lead over Kevin Anderson, but the South African could be playing well enough to win a set against the seventh seed.

Early punters were backing Simona Halep at odds-on to seal a quarter-final berth with a straight-sets victory over Carla Suarez Navarro, but the Spaniard has won all four of her clay-court meetings with the Romanian.

Qualifier Petra Martic could pose problems for Elina Svitolina after thrashing Anastasija Sevastova 6-1 6-1, but the Rome heroine has not been troubled much yet so should have more to give.

 

Pliskova is pretty accomplished on clay and the Roland Garros draw has opened up nicely for her
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