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Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Tennis Picks August 17th Cincinnati

It was a mixed bag yesterday in terms of the picks, and it leaves us with a slight deficit as we reach Day 3 of the tournament.

Only one of the big 4 has been in action so far, and that was Roger Federer with his impressive win over Juan Martin Del Potro last night.

The former World Number 1 has opened up his section with that win and has shortened considerably in the outright market. Federer was impressive behind serve, one of the elements that let him down against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga last week, and it was clear he enjoys the conditions at this venue.

Today we will see the rest of the top 4 players in action in what looks like another busy day of tennis action:

Andy Murray - 4.5 games vs David Nalbandian: I am going to back the British Number 1 to make a much better start to the week than he did in Montreal and come through with a bit to spare.

Murray will be able to get a much better feel for this match than he did against Kevin Anderson as he won't be getting big bombs served at him and will be involved in many more rallies.

David Nalbandian is not the force of old and looked bad in losses against Stanislas Wawrinka and James Blake over the last couple of weeks. He has won a match here already this week, but I think he will give Murray too many chances and lose 6-3, 6-4.

Some may prefer backing Murray with a - 4 game headstart, but I think the price on - 4.5 games is tempting enough to give it a shot.

Feliciano Lopez - 2 games vs Philipp Kohlschreiber: Barring a bad first service game, Feliciano Lopez showed how effective his serve can be on this surface when beating Juan Carlos Ferrero in 3 sets in the last Round.

He faces a difficult opponent in Kohlschreiber that can be erratic- one match he will look like a top 20 player, in others you struggle to see how he got into the top 100.

Lopez has a 3-0 head to head record against the German and I have a feeling we may see a flat performance from Kohlschreiber following his 3 set win over Andy Roddick in the last Round.

Radek Stepanek - 3.5 games vs Andrey Golubev: Radek Stepanek has shown he is clearly still in decent form, beating John Isner in the last Round and recently winning a hard court event in Washington.

He faces Andrey Golubev who stopped a 15 match losing run on the main tour in the last Round when beating Stanislas Wawrinka. I think Golubev took advantage of the Swiss mans exertions from Montreal and he will not get that luxury against Stepanek who is adept at playing on hard courts and has the variation and character to both frustrate and anger opponents.

Stepanek has a 3-1 head to head record over Golubev and his wins have been relatively straight forward. I think we may see a 6-4, 6-4 win for him tonight.

Gilles Simon - 2.5 games vs Janko Tipsarevic: I am backing Gilles Simon to win this match as he faces an opponent that looked a little fatigued in his win in the 1st Round following a run to the Semi Finals in Montreal last week.

We have seen in the past those players that do well in Canada and then falter in Cincinnati and I think Tipsarevic may be ripe for the taking here.

Simon has the winning mentality recently, albeit in a clay court event, and has beaten Tipsarevic in their 2 career meetings.

Francesca Schiavone - 2.5 games vs Maria Kirilenko: Francesca Schiavone is one of the toughest competitors on the WTA Tour and I feel her ability to chase down a lot of balls (excuse me?!!) gives her the edge to break down the Kirilenko game.

That seems to stand up to the 4-1 head to head record Schiavone holds over Kirilenko and the fact that Kirilenko has had a slight injury in recent weeks will not aid her cause.

Schiavone has won their last 2 meetings without dropping a set, including in Kirilenko's home country, and I think she will prove too strong again.

Serena Williams - 2.5 games vs Sam Stosur: The odds here are clearly much lower because Serena Williams was showing signs of fatigue following her recent successes when beating Lucie Hradecka in the last Round.

However, the best Women's player in the World said in her press conference that she had arrived in Cincinnati the night before and she expects to play better today.

Stosur is another who played a lot of tennis in reaching the Final in Toronto last week but she was easily beaten on that occasion following a tight first set. The Australian has also been suffering with a slight wrist problem, especially when hitting her backhand strokes, and I think Williams will confirm her superiority over her today.

Jelena Jankovic - 2.5 games vs Jie Zheng: I am going to back the former World Number 1, Jelena Jankovic, to come through this test against a player that has fallen from her best level that took her to a Wimbledon Semi Final in 2009.

Jie Zheng has won 3 Rounds here already so she is in form and she did push Serena Williams to 3 sets last week, but Jelena Jankovic has an impressive 4-1 head to head record against her opponent and she has won the last 3 meetings without dropping a set.

Jankovic has not had a good time on the hard courts this Summer so far, but she does adapt well to the faster surfaces and I expect her to come through tonight.

MY PICKS: Andy Murray - 4.5 games @ 2.25 Paddy Power (2 Units)
Feliciano Lopez - 2 games @ 1.95 Bodog (2 Units)
Radek Stepanek - 3.5 games @ 1.80 Bet365 (2 Units)
Gilles Simon - 2.5 games @ 1.80 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Francesca Schiavone - 2.5 games @ 1.83 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Serena Williams - 2.5 games @ 1.91 Paddy Power (2 Units)
Jelena Jankovic - 2.5 games @ 1.91 Bet365 (2 Units)

WEEKLY UPDATE: - 0.48 Units

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