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Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Tennis Picks March 14th (Indian Wells)

It was a terrible day for the picks as I ended up going against two players that have played as well as I have seen them in the last couple of seasons.

One player I shouldn't have opposed was Victoria Azarenka who is playing like the real deal and looks very confident and totally secure in what she wants to do.

However, David Nalbandian and Ana Ivanovic were both excellent in their wins yesterday, although the latter was helped by a truly horrific performance from Caroline Wozniacki.

I believe Wozniacki is struggling with the fact that she is no longer the World Number 1 and seems to have lost belief, very similar in the manner that Dinara Safina did although not with the same level of drop off of form.

However, I think the Dane is someone worth opposing in the coming weeks as I think more and more players believe in their own game to beat her.

I will never apologise for being a David Nalbandian fan and it was nice to see him roll back the clock yesterday with a fantastic performance to beat Janko Tipsarevic. Nalbandian was consistent and, bar a couple of bad service games, was pretty strong all round.

It is nice to see him playing that way, but I think I will be going against him again today, even if the win yesterday was the best I have seen him play since winning the title in Washington back in August 2010.

Nicolas Almagro + 1.5 sets v Tomas Berdych: This is going to be a very interesting watch considering the way their match at the Australian Open ended without a handshake, and I just think the Spaniard is being a little under-rated on a hard court that should suit his game.

I agree that Berdych is the more consistent player, but Almagro has opened 2012 in good form and the slower nature of these hard courts should give him a chance.

Their match at the Australian Open could not have been closer as Berdych won 4-6, 7-6, 7-6, 7-6 and that means the Czech player leads 5-2 in the head to head.

However, Almagro has won a set in 5 of their 6 completed meetings (one he lost when retiring in the first set) and I think the added spice will focus him to give his all here.

At odds-against, I think it is worth chancing that this goes the distance or potentially an Almagro win.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga - 3.5 games v David Nalbandian: As I said, David Nalbandian played his best match for a long time yesterday as he beat a top 10 player, but this challenge has been ramped up another level and I think it is going to be tough for him to repeat the trick against a player like Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

Tsonga is at his best on the faster surfaces, but he does have the ability to hit through these slower surfaces too, while David Nalbandian will have to serve at his very best if he is to keep the pressure off himself against a powerful server like the Frenchman.

Nalbandian has got the ability to make it tough for Tsonga when is at the top of his game, but I just have a feeling it may be too much to ask of him after the performance yesterday and I think Tsonga creates enough pressure on the Argentine's service games to win this one and cover the spread.

Rafael Nadal - 5.5 games v Alexandr Dolgopolov: Alexandr Dolgopolov has all the talent in the World, but to say he is inconsistent with it is an understatement and I think he is going to be given another lesson from the former World Number 1.

Rafael Nadal has looked like he has not missed a minute on the court in the first two matches he has played here, but this is the toughest opponent he has faced. However, the conditions should favour Nadal as it allows him to put his movement to good effect and I think he is going to cause Dolgopolov plenty of problems, despite also seeing some stunning winners go past him I am sure.

The problem for the Ukrainian will be the conditions, meaning he is likely going to have to hit two or three 'winners' before he can win the point against a defender of the capabilities of Nadal, and that is going to lead to errors and give the Spaniard chances.

Nadal also doesn't allow his opponent any easy games as he fights for every point, and that could allow him to cover with 3 breaks of serve spread over two sets.

MY PICKS: Nicolas Almagro + 1.5 sets @ 2.20 188Bet (2 Units)
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga - 3.5 games @ 2.05 Bet Victor (2 Units)

Rafael Nadal - 5.5 games @ 1.95 Bet Victor (2 Units)

Weekly Update: 7-6, + 1.74 Units (26 Units Staked)

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