Open Sud de France was firstly held in 1987 in Lyon and was relocated to Montpellier only in 2010. There was no event in 2011 as it directly moved to the slot in 2012. The tournament itself isn’t convenient for many players as it follows the Australian Open and very few sportsmen find it motivating to perform at the ATP 250. So it’s mainly won by the local players from France.
This year the calendar was shifted a bit so the draw is more challenging than the previous years.
Weather conditions and surface
The event is played indoors. The courts are fast enough and the players will need time to adapt. This is beneficial for big servers, net comers and is complicated for baseliners. The weather conditions are more pleasant comparing with the Australian Open but it’s more humid. Again, the local players will have less difficulty in getting used to the climate. Unlike the previous years, Open Sud de France is held after the Davis Cup and it means another weak for rest for participants.
In 2010 the tournament was won by Richard Gasquet, as well as in 2013, 2015, 2016. Twice Gael Monfils triumphed (in 2010 and 2014) and only once the French hegemony was interrupted by Tomas Berdych victory in 2012. This records show once again how the event is important for the local players who easily adapt to playing conditions.
This year is no exception with France’s top players engaged: Jo-Wilfred Tsonga, Benoit Paire, Pierre-Hugues Herbert, Jeremy Chardy. But at the same time there are those who may prevent the Frenchmales from winning the trophy.
Last year the final match featured Richard Gasquet and Paul-Henri Mathieu. This time considering Mathieu’s issues, we don’t back him. Richard Gasquet should show his best tennis.
We also want to single out Zverev, who will have to defend the semifinal points and judging by his current form he can make a deep run. Jo-Wilfred Tsonga is also likely to get into the last four. Verdasco and Cilic are also among dangerous competitors. But they’ll hardly show their best considering the event status and the motivation of the French players.
Benoit Paire is a dark horse currently and is criticized a lot, but we guess he’ll beat hard.
There should be no unpredictable champions, as the French team is very strong and highly motivated.
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Such evaluation of Gasquet from the bookmakers is understandable. The Frenchman lost his two previous encounters in a row to Monaco and Nadal, which is a sign of a bad form from Richard.
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