Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE) vs Lorenzo Musetti (ITA)
This is an important tournament for Tsitsipas. If everything goes his way, he could end up the champion. His issue has always been putting too much pressure on him self. Most people have predicted him to reach the final. The lower half of the draw is easier, and he has strong clay court credentials. He has a slam in him. Is this the one?
He comes up against Musetti, who is almost a smaller, younger, exact version of him. Both have incredible one-handed backhands. Musetti if he is on, could cause him problems. Musetti issue at this stage of his career is consistency. And slams are best of 5 sets
Prediction: Tsitsipas in 4 sets
Denis Shapovalov (CAN) vs Holger Rune (DEN)
This is one of the more intriguing Round 1 match ups. Shapovalov has entrenched himself as a top 20 player. Rune will get close to the top 20 by the end of year. Shapovalov has only passed the French Open first round once. He is coming off a strong Rome Masters, so will carry some confidence.
Rune is announcing himself to tennis fans quickly, and strongly. He has only just turned 19 and is already 40 in the world. He loves and trains on clay. I have been following for several years, and he seems to have an incredible work ethic, and attitude. He is easy to get behind.
Both have powerful strokes, but Rune is the more natural mover on clay, and tomorrow is predicted to be cold, which slows everything down. I see a long match.
Prediction: Rune in 5 sets
Hugo Gaston (FRA) vs Alex De Minaur (AUS)
Another match up between 2 similar players. Both are counter-punchers . De Minaur has had the best clay court season of his career. Having spent a lot of time training in Spain, I always thought clay could be his best surface. He comes up against Hugo Gaston who is having a terrible year after his breakout 2021. The French players lift their level like no other country in their homeland. And crowd loves Gaston.
It's important that De Minaur gets off to a good start and keeps crown out of it. Gaston will have fond memories of Roland Garros after last year. But his form has been bad, and confidence low
Prediction: De Minaur in 4 sets