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Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Tennis Picks July 20th ATP Hamburg

I have decided to split my Hamburg picks and Atlanta picks into two separate posts as the schedule for tomorrow's tennis in the USA wont be released until much later, while the prices are only really available in the morning, albeit several hours before the first game is due to start.

I will continue to update the weekly picks on both threads, but I find it is the easiest way to make any picks assuming there are some from both tournaments.

Hamburg used to be one of the top Masters events on the clay courts and while it does not have the big names entering anymore considering its place on the schedule, a good field has still turned up this week.

Yesterday we had a couple of surprises as Juan Carlos Ferrero, Phillip Petzschner and Guillermo Garcia-Lopez all lost as short favourites.

The last of those results looks like being a bit of good news for my outright pick of the week- Marin Cilic is yet to play but has seen the likes of Garcia-Lopez and Juan Ignacio Chela fall out of the draw in his section and he looks like he has a decent look at getting to the Quarter Finals now.

I was hoping Carlos Berlocq would have put out Mikhail Youzhny too, but that would be getting greedy and I just hope Cilic can take advantage of the draw opening up for him. He has dropped 8 points at the bookmakers without hitting a ball, so lets just hope he has come to play this week.

Now on to the Picks:

Treble; Marin Cilic vs Bastian Knittel, Gael Monfils vs Albert Ramos and Nicolas Almagro vs Lukas Rosol: None of the three players I am picking are the most trustworthy when it comes to being priced as short priced favourites in their matches but all three should have enough of an edge over their opponents to get through.

Marin Cilic was my outright pick this week, but he has struggled for form this season with his serve being particularly erratic in recent weeks. However, he plays against a German qualifier that had not won a match on the main tour on a clay court in the last few seasons before he beat Ivan Dodig.

Bastian Knittel is only 14-14 on clay in Challenger events and qualifiers this season and should not really have the level to trouble Cilic.

Gael Monfils is underachieving in his professional career considering all the talent he has- he may be in the top 10, but has failed to win tournaments on a consistent basis and still loses far too many silly matches.

Monfils was a disappointing loser in Stuttgart last week to Victor Hanescu, but he is a decent clay court player and that loss could be put down to his exertions in the Davis Cup a few days prior.

He meets a player that must play around 99% of his matches on the clay courts and one that performs very well on the Challenger circuit and when qualifying for main tour events. However, Ramos has never really transferred that form to the main tour, and I feel Monfils will be too consistent for him if he plays like he can.

Nicolas Almagro is the favourite to win this tournament and is likely to be glad he is playing Lukas Rosol rather than Potito Starace. Almagro is a very strong clay court player and one that has a proven track record of winning tournaments on the surface. His overall game should be too strong for Rosol, although it could be a tight first set.

Double; Florian Mayer vs Marsel Ilhan and Juan Monaco vs Janko Tipsarevic: Both of these players are favourites to win and I believe they can both do so.

Florian Mayer has lost his last 2 matches, but has had probably a career year on the main ATP tour. Mayer has had a decent season on the clay courts this season, reaching the Final in Munich and the Quarter Final in Rome before helping Germany win in Dusseldorf.

Marsel Ilhan is beginning to make an impact on the Challenger tour but he has not quite transferred that form onto the main tour. Ilhan did reach a Final on the surface a couple of weeks ago in Holland, but this should represent a hurdle too far here in Hamburg.

Janko Tipsarevic has not played since Serbia won their Davis Cup tie with Sweden and, judging by his statements since, he has enjoyed partying it up with his friends to celebrate. Tipsarevic is usually a tougher opponent on the faster surfaces and last Summer decided to play in Atlanta rather than in the clay tournaments after Wimbledon.

Juan Monaco is a clay court expert and it seems he has got over the foot injury that saw him withdraw at Bastad last week. The Argentine holds a win over Tipsarevic on the clay courts from 2 years ago, and I think he may have a little more motivation for this match.

Jurgen Melzer - 3.5 games vs Daniel Gimeno-Traver: This is a rematch from Madrid, a match that Gimeno-Traver won in straight sets, but I really feel Melzer can turn the form around this time.

Melzer had won their 2 previous meetings before that match in Madrid, including once on clay, and had won all 4 sets they had competed in. The Austrian might be ranked Number 12 in the World, but he has been struggling for form in recent weeks.

However, he did reach the Final here in Hamburg last year and Gimeno-Traver has been struggling himself this season with only 6 wins from the 24 matches he played this year.

If Melzer can serve well, I think he can put another pressure on Gimeno-Traver to get a break in each set and cover this spread.

MY PICKS: Treble; Marin Cilic, Gael Monfils and Nicolas Almagro @ 2.26 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Double; Florian Mayer and Juan Monaco @ 2.39 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Jurgen Melzer - 3.5 games @ 2.05 Pinnacle (2 Units)

WEEKLY UPDATE: + 1.26 Units

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