James Spencer selects his must-see matches on day two of the 2019 French Open with Britain’s Kyle Edmund against France’s Jeremy Chardy the highlight.
Kyle Edmund (28) vs Jeremy Chardy
As far as first-round encounters go, this is a tough test for British No 1 Edmund. Chardy is one of the highest-ranked players outside of the seeded players. The Frenchman has a big serve and a good all-round game. He will also have the Parisian crowd fully behind him.
Edmund may not have had a good clay-court season thus far but such a significant test this early in a Grand Slam might be perfect to get the best out of the young Brit.
I’m expecting a close match, which could go either way.
Pablo Carreno Busta vs Joao Sousa
Two of the better players to not be seeded, both have failed to deliver the best of their clay-court ability this year, which has resulted in this intriguing first-round match up.
Carreno Busta was seen as a possible heir to Rafael Nadal’s throne only two seasons ago as the 27-year-old cracked the Top 10 at the end of 2017. He has since plummeted to 57 in the world following injury. He will certainly be eager to step up his game at Roland Garros.
Meanwhile, Portugal’s Sousa has also been similarly off-colour meaning one of these players has a genuine opportunity to win and play their way into form.
Danielle Collins vs Tatjiana Maria
I chose this encounter on the women’s side as both seem pretty evenly matched. Collins played tremendously well back in January when she progressed to her first Grand Slam semi-final in Australia.
She will be hoping those memories galvanise her for a similar run here in Paris.
Maria is a tricky player and the German will certainly make it hard for Collins particularly from the baseline. This could go to three-sets.
Filip Krajinovic vs Frances Tiafoe (32)
Serbian Krajinovic famously made the final of the 2017 Paris Masters but his inconsistency has prevented him from backing up such performances. However, he may just raise his game against Next Gen star Frances Tiafoe.
The American has had an underwhelming clay-court season after being so convincing on his way to the quarter-finals in both the Australian Open and Miami Masters.
This match is finely poised and if both bring their A-game to the party, this could be a five-set classic.
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