May 24, 2022; Paris, France; Daniil Medvedev after winning his match against Fecund Bagnis (ARG) on day three of the French Open at Stade Roland-Garros.Mandatory Credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports
- As the second round wraps up at the French Open, the less-dramatic bottom half plays Thursday
- Only No. 4 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas is among the favorites to win it all from this half
- The top seed in this half, No. 2 Daniil Medvedev, is an underwhelming favorite vs. Djere. We break it down
The pre-tournament favorites are in the other half of the French Open men’s singles draw.
And No. 6 seed Carlos Alcaraz, behind just Novak Djokovic on the odds list, came within a point of going out in the second round. But somehow he survived.
No. 4 seed Tsitsipas, No. 11 Jannik Sinner, No. 7 Andrey Rublev, No. 12 Hubert Hurkacz and even unseeded Holger Rune are prohibitive favorites to win their second-round matches Thursday.
French Open Men’s Second-Round Odds
|Holger Rune (DEN) vs. Henri Laaksonen (SUI)||-910/+600
| Casper Ruud (NOR) vs. Emil Ruusuvuori (FIN)||-670/+475
| Daniil Medvedev (RUS) vs. Laslo Djere (SRB)||+215/-275
|[LL] Pedro Cachin (ARG) vs. Hugo Gaston (FRA)||-112/-112|
|Marton Fucsovics (HUN) vs.  Marin Cilic (CRO)||+170/-215
| Miomir Kecmanovic (SRB) vs. Alexander Bublik (KAZ)||-480/+340|
|Joao Sousa (POR) vs.  Lorenzo Sonego (ITA)||+170/-220|
| Frances Tiafoe (USA) vs. David Goffin (BEL)||+112/-139|
| Nikoloz Basilashvili (GEO) vs. Mackenzie McDonald (USA)||-195/+150|
|Marco Cecchinato (ITA) vs.  Hubert Hurkacz (POL)||+550/-910|
|Ilya Ivashka (BLR) vs. Cristian Garin (CHI)||+148/-182|
|[WC] Gilles Simon (FRA) vs. Steve Johnson (USA)||+148/-186|
| Dan Evans (GBR) vs. Mikael Ymer (SWE)||-230/+180|
| Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE) vs. [Q] Zdenek Kolar (CZE)||+2000/-10000|
| Andrey Rublev (RUS) vs. Federico Delbonis (ARG)||-1000/+650
| Jannik Sinner (ITA) vs. Roberto Carballes Baena (ESP)||+750/-1250|
Odds as of May 25 at Barstool Sportsbook
The only one of the five we might have a slight question about is Rublev, who faces a quality clay-courter in Federico Delbonis.
There’s no value in these these heavy favorites on their own, but could offer some parlay value. We’ve picked Tsitsipas and Sinner both to win in straight sets, which pays out at +147.
Simon vs Johnson Prediction
Gilles Simon, a Frenchman playing his final French Open, rode the wave of emotion after contemporary Jo-Wilfried Tsonga’s retirement ceremony Tuesday.
Then he went out and, at 1am, completed an upset of No. 16 Pablo Carreño Busta. it was literally the best clay-court match he’s played in a decade.
1AM at #RolandGarros, but you wouldn’t know it. Just remarkable. Gilles Simon through to the second round! pic.twitter.com/p6eNAEWx6v
— Jamie Hoyle (@jtahoyle) May 24, 2022
Simon is the underdog against Johnson, who’s not particularly comfortable on clay and whose backhand can be a liability because he can only slice it.
The two are meeting for the first time since one Simon win on hard court, all the way back in 2014.
The 37-year-old likely will not have had time to fully recharge after the win over Carreño Busta. But he should come out on fire.
Neither player is a stranger to marathons; a five-setter (regardless of winner) is at +250 at Bet365.
Pick: Simon Wins the First Set (+137)
Cachin vs Gaston Prediction
This battle between the newbie Pedro Cachin and the undersized Hugo Gaston (generously listed at 5-foot-8) is dead even in the odds.
Gaston has had great moments at the French Open and is an annoyingly crafty lefty who took out (with the help of the partisan crowd) No. 20 seed Alex de Minaur in the new fifth-set match tiebreak in the first round.
Cachin probably can’t believe his luck, and might be too oblivious for the crowd to affect him.
The 27-year-old Argentine is in the first Grand Slam main draw of his career; this French Open is the first time he even won back-to-back matches in the qualifying at a major.
Gaston is a crowd-pleaser at Roland Garros. And they should have a long, long time to cheer him on.
Both are about as close as you can come to clay specialists – they’re not much good on anything else.
Pick: Over 40.5 games (+125)
Basilashvili vs McDonald Prediction
Mackenzie McDonald defeated No. 22 seed Nikoloz Basilashvili in their one previous meeting. It came earlier this year on a quick indoor hard court on Rotterdam. And you’d back Basilashvili on a quick surface, since his firepower is such that he can blow opponents away on a faster court.
On the slower clay, a quick and dogged mover like McDonald is even more problematic to the Georgian, who needed five long sets to defeat Maxime Cressy in the first round.
Cressy is a throwback – an almost pure serve-volleyer who doesn’t really have defence.
Basilashvili was a poor 7-16 on the season coming into Paris. He’s far from at his best. And despite being the favorite, he could definitely go out.
Pick: Mcdonald to win Outright (+150)
Stephanie gets the straight dope from the tennis insiders. On court, she has represented her country internationally. A BA in journalism led to years on the MLB beat and a decade covering tennis globally. She’s written for Postmedia, the Guardian, the New York Times and also publishes OpenCourt.ca.