Heather Watson vs Sloane Stephens Betting TipsJake Cooper | 12 Oct 2016
Heather Watson vs Sloane Stephens | Thursday 28 May, 2015 | Roland Garros
Heather Watson looks to improve her 5-0 head to head record against Sloane Stephens when she takes on the American in the second round of the French Open on Thursday.
Watson delivered a 6-4, 7-5 win over France’s Mathilde Johansson in the first round, while Stephens produced a shock result, eliminating seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams with a 7-6, 6-1 victory.
Britain has produced very few successes in the French Open women’s singles category since the early 90s, with just six wins since Clare Wood reached the second round in 1994. Watson has recorded four of those six, however, and is performing well after her recovery from glandular fever.
The win over Johansson, who reached the third round at the French Open three years ago, was hard fought after coming from 4-2 down to win the set. A strong breeze at Roland Garros made clean hitting a challenge for everyone but Watson was able to save a set point in the second set before winning the next four games to recover the match and progress to the next round.
Stephens’ clash against an out of form Williams proved slightly easier than Watson’s first round match. The 22-year-old American proved too nimble and determined for her more experienced opponent and, after a closely fought first set, quickly overpowered a tiring Williams in the second.
Watson reflected on her round 2 opponent’s first round victory, commenting, “Venus is a great player. I respect her. She’s still going and I don’t know how old she is. I think she’s 34, and she is still motivated, still fighting every week.
“Growing up seeing her on telly, seeing her win Wimbledon and then slowly me playing tennis and being there with her, it’s great.”
Despite Stephens’ significant victory against such an experienced veteran of the game, Watson remains confident about reaching the third round for the first time at the French Open.
“I have a good record against Sloane,” the Brit commented. “I played her this year in Hobart. She is obviously a great player and every time we meet I’ve had to play well.”
On her first round victory she added, “I was maybe supposed to win but I think in those situations you can put pressure on yourself and think about the outcome instead of playing your tennis, so it was very important for me to get through.”
Watson is the only British woman remaining in the French open draw after Johanna Konta fell 7-6, 4-6, 6-2 to Denisa Allertova in the first round.
Heather Watson vs Sloane Stephens Betting Tips
Given her record against Stephens, Heather Watson is a great bet to win in this pairing, with best odds 15/8 at Betway.
We’re backing Watson to beat Stephens in two sets, at 4/1 with Sky Bet.