French Open

French Open Quarter Final Tip: Tournament pick to win battle of the Alex's

Zverev clay
Zverev on course: Outright pick is now favourite to reach French Open final

Our tennis expert Gavin Mair has cast his eye towards an intriguing clash between Alexander Zverev and Alex De Minaur in the Quarter Final.

  • Clear pathway to the final

  • Level pegging on serve

  • Five-set format should favour stronger player

There is now a clear pathway for our tournament pick Alexander Zverev to reach the French Open final.

Following Novak Djokovic's withdrawal from the event due to the knee injury sustained against Francisco Cerundolo, our 9/110.00 hope is now only two matches away from contesting the title and is favourite to reach Sunday's championship match.

It won't be easy. It rarely is for Zverev and that's where my focus is on day 11.

De Minaur in good form

His opponent Alex De Minaur caused a sizeable upset in the previous round eliminating former world number one Daniil Medvedev. Yes, the Russian was evidently struggling with blisters on his feet but it was still a strong performance from De Minaur.

This has been the most impressive spell the Australian has had on clay and this run is testament to his improvement on the surface.

Nevertheless his clay record is far from the best with his win over Medvedev only his second throughout his career against a top 10 player on the dirt. The other was against Cameron Norrie.

What both of these losing players have in common is that they prefer other surfaces, with the French Open being the Slam where they've made least impact.

Zverev on the other hand is consistent across all surfaces and has multiple Masters titles in Madrid and Rome to show for it.

The German also tends to get the better off this match-up winning seven of their nine career meetings.

The match-up dynamic is favourable to Zverev. Both players look to control the baseline aiming to win the territory and consistency battles rather than attempting to fire high risk winners at any opportunity.

There is one major reason why this favours Zverev - the serve. Across the past twelve months Zverev has held serve 87.8% of the time, compared to De Minaur's 79.8%. That is a significant difference, equivalent to Zverev holding serve nine out of every ten games compared to the Australian's eight out of ten.

Zverev's dips

Whilst Zverev should win this match - his career record and the most important statistic would indicate that - in his matches so far he has been leaving the door open for his opponent's to have their own moments of superiority.

In round one a faded Rafael Nadal had the opportunity to serve for set one, whilst Tallon Griekspoor and Holger Rune stretched Zverev to five sets.

Against all three players the German looked assured and rhythmic on serve until a sudden dip would concede a soft game. If you are doing that your opponent will have chances.

I respect the form of the Australian throughout this tournament. He is holding serve at an equivalent rate to his opponent - Zverev 86.25% service holds, De Minaur 86%.

Four of their past five meetings have seen the duo split sets with Zverev winning three of the five.

Over the longer five set match format that should favour the stronger player which is Zverev, but he is prone to dips and De Minaur has shown this tournament that he is capable of taking advantage.

My tip today is for Alex Zverev to win and both players to win a set at 13/102.30

Now head to our Euro 2024 HUB for the best tips before the tournament!

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