This is unquestionably the correct final for the tournament. The Polish world #1 has simply continued her unbelievable form to now stand at 35 matches unbeaten and at the brink of her second Roland-Garros title in three years.
On the other side of the net stands a teenager. A few months on from the all-teenager battle of the US Open 2021 between Emma Raducanu and Leylah Fernandez, it perhaps doesn’t feel like big news that another 18-year-old in Coco Gauff has reached this stage. Trust me, it is. Despite Gauff’s breakthrough coming as a 15-year-old at Wimbledon, and indeed her first title coming at that age, it has still been a long road for the American.
Gauff has taken the slower, incremental development road. Far from just a serve and a powerful groundstroke as she was when she emerged on the scene, Gauff has genuinely world class movement around the court, and, especially on a clay court. She remains so poised in her slides that she is able to hit a perfectly controlled backhand or forehand whilst on the slide.
All this is to say that despite the odds being so heavily in Swiatek’s favour there are reasons to believe that there is a genuine match to be made of this encounter. The pair met last year in Rome, one of Swiatek’s favourite tournaments. The Pole would go on to win the final in Rome in 2021 6-0 6-0 in the final against Karolina Pliskova. However, against Gauff, in the semifinals, the American pushed Swiatek to a first set tiebreak. Even in the second set the match was decided by a single break of serve margin.
Women’s French Open Final
Gauff to win over 7.5 (Player B Total Games 7.5 – Over 7.5)
My first recommended bet for the final is to suggest that Gauff can keep this final tighter than the odds suggest. There are plenty of ways to support this line of argument, the obvious being the game handicap. Swiatek to give Gauff a 5.5 game headstart in the match is an odds on shot that does seem a touch of value. However, one can get stung with this type of bet. Earlier in this tournament Zheng Qinwen took the first set from the Pole in a tiebreak, however losing the next two sets heavily meant that the bet still lost. Therefore, the recommendation is for Gauff to win over 7.5 games which is pretty much covered if Gauff wins a set or if she loses in two close sets.
Most Aces Handicap 1.5 – Coco Gauff
Gauff is the player with the bigger serve, despite the fact that Swiatek wins more points and more games behind her serve. The data over their careers shows that Gauff hits double the number of aces than Swiatek, albeit this margin does shrink on clay courts. Also, in their two previous meetings, Gauff has covered the handicap on offer here. It may be an area in which the American may feel she has to maximise to get anything out of the match so could go for big serves regularly.
Set 1 Correct Score Group – 6-4, 7-5 or 7-6
Finals can often be tight at first, albeit not usually when Swiatek is involved (more on which later). Despite her tender years, Gauff strikes me as the type of player who won’t melt in the face of the occasion. She has performed on the big stage for three years and has won the junior title here before as well. The way that she is talking in press also convinces.
Swiatek is pretty nailed on to bring her game. Her record in finals is very intimidating. Since losing her first WTA final to Polona Hercog in 2019 she hasn’t dropped more than 5 games in any final. This a run that began with the 2020 French Open final and continues for eight successive finals, including five this season.
However, despite this, three of those matches began with a 6-4 first set. With the way Gauff has been playing I expect the first set to be competitive and be decided either by a single break or a tiebreak. The odds against available for the correct score group 6-4, 7-5, 7-6 to either player makes some appeal.
Set 2 Score 6-2
All of Swiatek’s finals have opened up in the second set. In this case all of them were won by the Pole either 6-0, 6-1 or 6-2. Even if Gauff wins the first set, we saw earlier in the tournament that Swiatek’s reaction to losing a set against Zheng Qinwen was to dominate the next set 6-0.
The market of there to be fewer games in Set 2 than Set 1 makes some appeal but it might be worth being more speculative and chancing a correct score of 6-2 in the second set. This is a score that could be within range for Gauff to achieve if she is playing particularly well, but is one that Swiatek has hit 3 times out of 8 in her finals in the second set.
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How to watch the 2022 Women’s French Open Final
📅 When is the Women’s French Open Final? / Saturday, 4th June 2022 from 2pm
🏟 Where is the Women’s French Open Fina / Stade Roland Garros (Paris, France)
📺 What TV channel is the Women’s French Open Fina on? / Eurosport