2023 French Open Expert Picks | Best Bets for Elina Svitolina vs Storm Hunter, Jessica Pegula vs Camila Giorgi
NurPhoto/Getty. Pictured: Camila Giorgi.
The first round of the French Open produced excellent play and the second round will surely be terrific!
I’ve found value on two of Wednesday's women's matchups — Elina Svitolina vs Storm Hunter and Jessica Pegula vs Camila Giorgi.
Read on for my 2023 French Open expert picks.
Note: Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches and seeing French Open odds.
French Open Expert Picks
Elina Svitolina (-350) vs Storm Hunter (+265)
5:15 a.m. ET
Elina Svitolina dismissed Martina Trevisan 6-2, 6-2 in the first round. Svitolina won 71% of her service points and didn't face a break point. The Ukrainian won 49% of her return points, including 67% on Trevisan's second serve, and broke four times.
Svitolina is now 9-6 on the season on clay, with a WTA Tour title in Strasbourg. For her career, the Ukrainian has an excellent 124-66 record on the surface. She is incredibly consistent and can hit with power into targets well. She was solid from both wings, but the controlled aggression from her backhand wing in that first-round match was most impressive. Svitolina also hits her spots on serve.
Storm Hunter qualified for Roland Garros without losing a set and beat Nuria Parrizas-Diaz 4-6, 6-2, 6-4 to advance to the second round. Hunter won 60% of her service points and was broken four times. On return, the Aussie won 71% of her second-serve returns, breaking on six occasions.
Hunter is now an impressive 8-1 this year on clay, but is just 47-38 on the dirt as a professional. Hunter plays an aggressive game, attempting to dictate with her lefty forehand and showing no fear of moving forward, as the Aussie is strong at the net. Hunter's rally tolerance can limit her game and her backhand is prone to breaking down.
Svitolina showed no signs of fatigue and was impressive against Trevisan. She looked so comfortable against the Italian. Svitolina hung in there well when Trevisan peppered her backhand before the Ukrainian got a weaker shot that she could use to take control.
Hunter's power won't bother Svitolina, as she effectively absorbs pace and counter-punches. And when she tries to spread the court and move Svitolina around, her speed and anticipation should neutralize Hunter attempts to throw her off.
Finally, when looking at Elo ratings, Svitolina's overall Elo is 143.2 points higher than Hunter's and her clay Elo is 208.5 points above the Aussie's.
Pick: Svitolina 2-0 (-131 via PointsBet)
Jessica Pegula (-300) vs Camila Giorgi (+225)
5:45 a.m. ET
Jessica Pegula beat an undercooked Danielle Collins 6-4, 6-2 to advance in Paris. Pegula won 78% of her first serves, although she won just 27% of her second serves, getting broken on three occasions. But, Pegula did win 57% of her return points and breaking six times.
Pegula improved her 2023 clay-record to 7-3 with a solid 112-72 record on the surface for her career. She has very few weaknesses. The American gets consistent depth and places her shots around the court well. Pegula's anticipation of where her opponents are hitting is superb.
On clay, the American's serve is vulnerable and her flatter groundstrokes don't cut through the clay well. Pegula looked underpowered against Collins and was lucky that Collins played poorly.
Camila Giorgi got her Roland Garros campaign off to a good start, defeating Alize Cornet 6-3, 6-4. Giorgi won just 48% of her first serves and was broken four times, although she did win 58% of her second serves. The Italian did win 57% of her return points, breaking on seven occasions.
While Giorgi is at her best on quicker courts, she has the firepower to hit through any surface. Giorgi is 3-2 this season on clay, with a decent 118-88 career-record on the dirt. The Italian doesn't have a huge serve, but plays with extreme aggression from the baseline.
When she's playing well, Giorgi can beat anyone, but she is very inconsistent. This even extends within matches, as the Italian can have a set of brilliance followed by a set of ineptitude.
Pegula and Giorgi have played five times since the start of 2021. While Pegula won four of those matches, four of the five went three sets (including their only clay meeting during this time period).
When these two match up, Giorgi usually hits through Pegula for a set before eventually succumbing to the American's rally tolerance.
Despite the scoreline, Pegula looked vulnerable against Collins. She struggled to get much punch on her groundstrokes and serve, although Collins wasn't able to take advantage. At least for a set, Giorgi should successfully attack Pegula's weaker serves and control the baseline, hitting through Pegula's tame clay game.
Pick: Giorgi +1.5 sets (-115 via BetMGM)