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Saturday, 17 November, 2018

Upbeat Heather Watson faces tough second-round test in Paris

Briton can push Elise Mertens all the way

Heather Watson has caught the eye this week
1 of 2

Day five
Starts 10am, ITV4 & Eurosport 1 & 2

Watson v Mertens
Heather Watson was surprisingly upbeat in her pre-tournament hopes for the French Open and she certainly posted a positive result in her opener.

Beating Oceane Dodin 6-3 6-0 was no mean feat, but it's likely to get a whole lot tougher for the Briton against Elise Mertens, winner of titles in Hobart, Lugano and Rabat this year.

Mertens is a battler as well as having a touch of class, so anyone thinking of siding with Watson should be careful. But the Guernsey native is potentially such a fine player that believing she could keep tabs on the Belgian may not be such a pipe dream.

Watson is 4-5 in receipt of a six-game start from Betway and that's difficult to argue with.

H Watson +6 games
1pt 4-5 Betway

Ramos-Vinolas v Ruud
It's amazing the way the Spanish players tend to find more even when they're not at their best and that could be the case when Albert Ramos-Vinolas meets Casper Ruud for a place in the last 32 of the French Open.

Ramos-Vinolas is a fine player on slow and hard courts at his best, but the Iberian ace has not been at his brilliant best in the European clay campaign.

Basically he looks vulnerable against exciting Norwegian teenager Ruud but the betting, which has been virtually one-way traffic for Ramos-Vinolas, suggests otherwise.

With that in mind, instead of a punt on Ruud on, say, total-games handicaps it could be wiser to back the clash to last longer than the oddsmakers expect.

Betway go 4-5 that more than 35 games are contested and that looks acceptable in what may prove a close-fought encounter.

Over 35.5 games
1pt 4-5 Betway

Sasnovich v Bertens
Not for the first year Kiki Bertens has been showing she's one of the best clay-courters on the WTA Tour, but it may be wrong to think the Dutchwoman is unbeatable.

Sasnovich is one of the more competent younger performers on the women's circuit and the Belarusian may now be experienced enough to keep tabs on her opponent.

The 4-7 about Sasnovich with a start of 6.5 games is a little short, but it may still be worth chancing the outsider in receipt of six at 8-11.

A Sasnovich +6 games
1pt 8-11 Betway

World Cup quizzes 

Groups A & B

Groups C & D

Groups E & F

Groups G & H

Which World Cup legend are you?

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Ramos-Vinolas looks vulnerable against exciting Norwegian teenager Ruud but the betting, which has been virtually one-way traffic, suggests otherwise
E.W. Terms
Sky bet