French Open Day 2 Men’s Predictions Including Casper Ruud vs Benoit Paire

Frances Tiafoe in action ahead of the French Open.
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Day two at the French Open should see plenty of entertainment for the fans with 24 first-round matches on the slate in Paris. As ever, we here at LWOT will be offering our predictions for every match on the slate, including Roger Federer vs Denis Istomin, Jannik Sinner vs Pierre-Hugues Herbert, Alexander Bublik vs Daniil Medvedev, Sam Querrey vs John Isner and Lorenzo Musetti vs David Goffin. Making their picks for this group of matches are Jim Smith, Yesh Ginsburg and Damian Kust.

French Open Day 2 Predictions

Sebastian Korda vs Pedro Martinez

Jim: The future of American’s tennis looks to be in safe hands with Sebastian Korda. The American has shown an aptitude for clay-court tennis uncommon amongst his peers, last year reaching the fourth round in Paris and last week winning his first career title in Parma. There are still areas of his game to improve and he will need to guard against fatigue here, but he should be able to overpower Pedro Martinez.

Prediction: Korda in 3

Yesh: Korda is in blistering form. He just won the ATP 250 event in Parma without losing a set. He’s found his clay footing at the perfect time. I expect him to give Tsitsipas a run for his money in the next round. This should be no trouble.

Prediction: Korda in 3

Damian: The recently crowned Parma champion will be coming to Paris with a lot of momentum on his side. Fatigue might be an issue later on, but for now, all the positive feelings should work out well for Sebastian Korda. The fourth round from last year might be tough to repeat but the 20-year-old should pull through here.

Prediction: Korda in 4
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Casper Ruud vs Benoit Paire

Benoit Paire is a fine player on his day, but he is also often disinterested and there are serious flaws in his technique, particularly on the forehand side. Casper Ruud, meanwhile, remains short of the reliable weapon that would turn him into a contender for the biggest titles, but the Norwegian is carving out a very fine career. Expect him to account for Paire comfortably.

Prediction: Ruud in 3

Yesh: Ruud is in great form, and he’s really enjoying the clay swing. But Paire loves the crowds, loves playing at home, and has lots of talent when he wants to. Don’t be shocked if Paire makes this a tight match.

Prediction: Ruud in 5

Damian: Benoit Paire is a hot mess right now and he’ll be facing one of the players most commonly popping up in the discourse about possible dark horses. Casper Ruud has evolved into an absolute beast of a clay-court player and even if the Frenchman was on top of his game, he’d likely be completely outclassed. 

Prediction: Ruud in 3

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Nikoloz Basilashvili vs Dusan Lajovic

This a tough draw for both men. But Nikoloz Basilashvili has been in poor form of late, with the Georgian having lost his last three matches since winning the title in Munich. Dusan Lajovic has not been at his best either, but the Serbian did manage to snap his own losing streak by reaching the last eight on home turf in Belgrade. That confidence might just carry him past Basilashvili and into the second round.

Prediction: Lajovic in 5

Yesh: Basilashvili has been incredibly hot or cold all year, and it seems impossible to guess which will Basilashvili will turn up in any given match. Lajovic is a solid player, so he’s safer right now.

Prediction: Lajovic in 4

Damian: Basilashvili continues to be a player who can switch from being unbeatable to an error machine in no time. It’s impossible to tell what you’re going to get, especially as the Georgian went from a title in Munich to losing his next three matches. With Dusan Lajovic’s lacking form of late, perhaps the Serbian won’t be able to do enough to make the bad moments outweigh the great ones.

Prediction: Basilashvili in 5
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Steve Johnson vs Frances Tiafoe

Steve Johnson has had a fine career, particularly for a player who does not have a topspin backhand in his arsenal. But his game has always been better suited to quicker surfaces, in part because of his reliance on his sliced backhand, and he appears to have been in decline over the past two years. The powerful groundstrokes of Frances Tiafoe should see the younger man into the second round.

Prediction: Tiafoe in 3

Yesh: This battle of the Americans at least ensures that one reaches the second round. Neither is playing particularly well right now. Once upon a time, Tiafoe had more upside in this matchup. At the moment, though, Johnson is more consistent–barely.

Prediction: Johnson in 4

Damian: Tiafoe is definitely among the best Americans on red clay, Johnson used to belong in that group. He’s yet to win a match this season though and hasn’t won one on clay since Lyon in 2019. It would be quite a shock if he somehow managed to turn it around here.

Prediction: Tiafoe in 3

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