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Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Tennis Picks (February 27th)

Yesterday turned out to be a mixed bag for the picks as a couple of retirements and pushes meant not too much was settled either way. Hopefully, this day will prove to be a little more productive than the first couple of days of this week have been.

Tomas Berdych - 5.5 games v Tobias Kamke: The only previous time that Tobias Kamke and Tomas Berdych met one another on the professional Tour was back in 2010 on an indoor hard court and resulted in a big surprise win for Kamke.

I think it would arguably be an even bigger surprise if he knocks off Berdych in this Second Round match in Dubai as the Czech player has been performing at a very decent level, one that Kamke has rarely reached in the past.

Kamke can certainly put in a string of solid points, but his service isn't the best and Berdych will have some real success if he sees enough second serves in this one. With the way that Berdych has been serving himself, you wouldn't imagine Kamke creating too many chances in this one to break serve himself and I think the court is just playing quick enough to make Berdych's game that much bigger.

I think Berdych could get through with a few breaks here and I am looking at this one ending 6-3, 6-2 in favour of the seeded player.

Juan Martin Del Potro - 5.5 games v Somdev Devvarman: Juan Martin Del Potro had to save two match points to stay in the tournament here, but I think he will have a slightly easier time in this one against Somdev Devvarman, a player still recovering from a long-term injury.

This will be the first time these two have met on Tour, but I think Del Potro's game will be a little too big for Devvarman who is still trying to get back his consistency on a tennis court. He may feel he has to go for a little too much to get the Argentinian behind him on the scoreboard in this one and that could lead to more mistakes.

I also think Del Potro served well enough yesterday to think he'll be able to hold on to serve in this one and I think the match with a similar scoreline as the Tomas Berdych match against Tobias Kamke.

Fabio Fognini - 2 games v Aljaz Bedene: Both of these players are coming of surprising wins in the First Round, but I think it will be Fabio Fognini who is able to back that up with another in this match and build some more Ranking points.

Fognini beat an out-of-sorts Stanislas Wawrinka in straight sets, while Aljaz Bedene came from a set down to see off David Nalbandian, but I like the Italian's chances in this one as he spends more time playing at the higher level.

He is a tough player to get a real read on because Fognini can be so hit and miss, but Bedene is a player that has not played too many matches on the main ATP Tour, even if he has had considerable success at Challenger level on the clay courts.

I just feel Fognini is going to be a little too clever for him and the variation in the Italian's game could bamboozle Bedene enough to allow him to move forward in the draw. I will be careful with this one though as Fognini has the habit of tanking sets when he falls behind.

Nicolas Almagro - 4.5 games v Tommy Robredo: Tommy Robredo is on the comeback trail again, but he is far off the level that used to see him reach the latter stages of these tournaments on a clay court on a regular basis. He has played a lot of tennis recently after reaching the Semi Final in Buenos Aires last week and had a tough three set win in the First Round here, but now faces another real challenge.

Robredo is facing his compatriot Nicolas Almagro and has been beaten on all four previous occasions he has faced him in the professional ranks, including three fairly straight-forward losses on the clay courts.

The clay court swing in South America is an enjoyable time for Almagro who came through an easy First Round match while dropping just the one game. I expect he will be able to create a lot of pressure on Robredo in this match, starting behind an effective serve.

It should be a fairly routine win and I expect Almagro to perhaps take it 6-2, 6-4 and will back him to cover these games.

Rafael Nadal - 6.5 games v Martin Alund: Rafael Nadal was a comfortable 6-2, 6-2 winner in the First Round and I think the former World Number 1 will be able to come through this match with few issues too.

He will be familiar with Martin Alund having played him in the Semi Final in Sao Paulo and that was on a clay court that wasn't up to the standards that the ones in Acapulco are. On that occasion, Nadal won a couple of sets easily, although he was taken to a tie-break in the other and I am expecting the Spaniard to be much more comfortable this time.

Alund has come through qualifiers and a tough First Round match here so will be hardened for the battle, but this is a player that has been a mainstay in the lower level of Challenger events and he won't be able to surprise Nadal with his game this time and a routine 6-2, 6-2 win could be in the making.

MY PICKS: Tomas Berdych - 5.5 Games @ 1.84 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Juan Martin Del Potro - 5.5 Games @ 1.90 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Fabio Fognini - 2 Games @ 1.94 Pinnacle (1 Unit)
Nicolas Almagro - 4.5 Games @ 1.71 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Rafael Nadal - 6.5 Games @ 1.88 Pinnacle (2 Units)

Weekly Update: 2-3-1, - 1.80 Units (12 Units Staked, - 15% Yield)

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