French Open final 2018: Betting preview

10-time French Open champion Rafael Nadal will take on Dominic Thiem in the final

French Open champion Rafael Nadal Photo: Marianne Bevis

Rafael Nadal will take on Dominic Thiem in pursuit of an eleventh French Open title in the Roland Garros showpiece on Sunday afternoon.

The 32-year-old has won the French Open crown on 10 previous occasions to make him the most successful clay court player in history.

It’s no surprise he is the favourite in French open betting odds head of Sunday’s showpiece.

Nadal can move to within three Grand Slam titles of his great rival (and friend) Roger Federer if he triumphs in Paris once again.

He overcame Swiss ace Stanislas Wawrinka in the Roland Garros final last year after a 6-2, 6-3, 6-1 in the French Open men’s championship.

Nadal beat Italian Simone Bolelli in the first round before he eased to a 6-2, 6-1, 6-1 win over Argentinian Guido Pella in the round of 64.

The Spanish ace overcame home favourite and 27th seed Richard Gasquet to reach the round of 16 and edge closer to the Roland Garros showpiece.

Nadal continued his effortless progress in the second Grand Slam of year with straight sets win over Germany’s Maximilian Marterer to reach the quarter-final.

He dropped his first set in the tournament when Nadal beat Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 to set up a semi-final meeting with another Argentinian, Juan Martin del Potro.

The 29-year-old couldn’t land a blow on Nadal as the 10-time champion eased to a 6-4. 6-1, 6-2 win to secure a place in the Roland Garros final.

His opponent is highly rated Thiem. The Austrian has previous when it comes to the King of Clay on his favourite surface.

Thiem emerged victorious on clay in Buenos Aires in 2016, in Rome in 2017 and in Madrid earlier this year. While Nadal has won six of their nine meetings (all on clay), Thiem can take encouragement from his recent success.

The Austrain has often been billed as the long-term term successor to Nadal on clay when the 32-year-old’s powers finally start to wane.

Thiem dropped a set in victories over Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas, Italy’s Matteo Berrettini and Japan number one Kei Nishikori.

He managed to overcome exciting 22-year-old talent Alexander Zverev to cause something of an upset after the seventh seed beat the world number two.

Thiem ended Marco Cecchinato’s incredible against the odds run to the final after 7-5 7-6 (12-10) 6-1 win over the Italian.

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