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Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Australian Open Day 4 Picks 2013 (January 17th)

It was another mixed bag of results, although the frustration of Janko Tipsarevic mentally departing from his game plan was the biggest disappointment as that would have ensured another winning day, but instead a small loss was made.

However, it puts things into perspective when you hear the story of the helicopter crash in London, not far from where I work as it happens, so I'll move on from complaining and just hope no one else is injured after hearing of a couple of fatalities there.

Svetlana Kuznetsova - 4.5 games v Su-Wei Hsieh: Svetlana Kuznetsova is the lower Ranked player in this match, but that is down to the fact that she missed much of the back end of 2012 with an injury, but she is rightly the favourite in this contest having opened 2013 in good form.

Kuznetsova was an easy winner in the First Round and I think she is going to have too much for Su-Wei Hsieh who is a player that has had considerably more success in the lesser WTA tournaments over the last twelve months than she has ever done when at Grand Slam level.

Hsieh is a solid competitor and she is unlikely to roll over, but Kuznetsova is capable of taking the racquet out of her hand and I think she can get through with a 6-3, 6-3 score.

Maria Kirilenko - 2.5 games v Shuai Peng: Shuai Peng is another very solid competitor on the WTA Tour, but I feel Maria Kirilenko is going to have a little too much for her in this match and I do think the higher seeded Russian can book her place in the Third Round.

Peng has the more wins to open up the 2013 season, while both have come through their First Round match in Melbourne with little to no problems at all.

However, I think Kirilenko is the more consistent player and I don't believe Peng has the shot power to hit through her in this one. They met at Wimbledon last season and Kirilenko won much more comfortably than it may seem for a match that went the distance and I think she can record another solid win in this one.

Gael Monfils - 5.5 games v Yen-Hsun Lu: Gael Monfils was an impressive First Round winner when he knocked out Alexandr Dolgopolov and I fancy he will have enough about him to back that up against Yen-Hsun Lu.

Lu is one of those competitors that can suddenly get really hot in matches and he is probably best known for beating Andy Roddick at Wimbledon a couple of years ago. He has already pushed David Ferrer the distance in Auckland this season and he may pose some problems for Monfils.

The real difference is that Monfils is likely to win freer points on his own serve, particularly the first serve, and I think he will force Lu to go for one too many shots and that should eventually see him through. There is a chance that this match is forced to go at least 4 sets, but I am expecting the Frenchman to be the man who pushes on to the Third Round.

Gilles Simon - 4.5 games v Jesse Levine: Gilles Simon is not exactly my favourite player to watch, but I do expect he will be a little too consistent and too solid for the left handed Jesse Levine who was a 'surprise' winner over Tommy Robredo in the First Round.

The fact that Levine is left handed could cause some early problems for Simon as those angles worked by southpaws are slightly unconventional for a right hander, but you have to think a former top ten regularly will be suitably prepared.

Levine also has a lot of early wins under his belt in 2013 which should give him some confidence, but Simon is arguably the best player he has played so far in this part of the season and I would guess he would be a little too strong when it is all said and done.

Roger Federer - 7.5 games v Nikolay Davydenko: To say Roger Federer has dominated this series is not an understatement at all as he has beaten Nikolay Davydenko in 17 of their 19 meetings throughout their career.

There were some signs that Davydenko might be recovering some sort of form during his run to the Final in Doha to open his 2013 season, but Federer looked very good in the First Round and it is hard to see anything but a fairly straightforward win for the former World Number 1.

There have been some tough, close matches, between the pair in recent seasons, including a 4 set win for Federer here at the Australian Open three years ago, but I think Federer will want to remind people that this isn't a procession between Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray to the Final and I expect him to put in a big performance.

MY PICKS: Svetlana Kuznetsova - 4.5 Games @ 2.14 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Maria Kirilenko - 2.5 Games @ 2.05 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Gael Monfils - 5.5 Games @ 1.85 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Gilles Simon - 4.5 Games @ 1.95 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Roger Federer - 7.5 Games @ 2.00 Paddy Power (2 Units)

Australian Open Update: 5-8, - 2.40 Units (21 Units Staked, - 11.4% Yield)

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