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Friday, 8 March 2013

Tennis Picks Indian Wells 2013 (March 8th)

The live TV coverage from the WTA side of the tournament at Indian Wells will begin today, while the ATP event will begin tomorrow. I still don't quite understand why these Masters events are rarely covered in the First Round considering the day and age when even Challenger events can be seen from the early stages.

It was a good start for the picks as both of the ones made yesterday came in fairly comfortably. Hopefully that will be the beginning of a solid ten days at Indian Wells before both Tours move on to Miami.

Dmitry Tursunov - 2.5 games v Philipp Petzschner: It has been something of a revival of form for Dmitry Tursunov over the last couple of weeks as he made a Semi Final in Marseille and also made the Quarter Final in Dubai to see his Ranking improve and push him back into the top 100. Tursunov has a big game, but he has been very inconsistent, although he should be full of confidence coming into this one with a couple of qualifying wins under his belt.

His opponent can be very good at times, but Philipp Petzschner is coming off a tough season last year and has also had a couple of injury problems to open 2013. The German also came through qualifying this week, but I think it will be tough for him against a confident player like Tursunov.

It will be close, but I do think Tursunov will come through and I think this spread should be covered with a straight sets win for the Russian.

Alejandro Falla - 3.5 games v Bjorn Phau: Neither one of these players have been in any semblance of form in recent weeks, but Bjorn Phau is coming off a knee injury and has struggled.

I think Alejandro Falla will likely be a little too strong for Phau and I think he does hold the edge when it comes to holding serve and I do think the Colombian will be able to come through with a straight sets win.

The pick is more against Phau than it is having a lot of confidence in Falla, but the court should be slow enough to keep Falla comfortable and he should be too good.

Bobby Reynolds v Benjamin Becker: Bobby Reynolds has come through qualifiers and I think he can win this pick 'em match against Benjamin Becker who I just don't think cuts it too often on the Main Tour.

Reynolds beat Becker in qualifying for the Toronto Masters back in August and I think the fact he has a couple of wins under his belt here already should give him the advantage in the match. My biggest concern would be that Reynolds hasn't had a lot of wins on the Main Tour in the last twelve months, even though he has come through qualifiers for a few tournaments.

However, this is just about one of the better draws the American could have received in the First Round and I think he'll have enough belief that he can win this match as he has won the two previous matches against Becker.

Fabio Fognini v Aljaz Bedene: This is another pick 'em contest and one where I think the slight favourite, Fabio Fognini, can find a way past an opponent he beat last week, albeit on a clay court.

The problem Fognini has always had is whether he can stay in a match from a mental point of view- too many times he lapses and his play fluctuates wildly within matches. A lot of that can be down to his concentration, while not having the biggest serve means the Italian will have to earn almost all the points he wins.

I am actually a little surprised that Fognini is as high as 36 in the World Rankings, and the next month or so gives him a great chance to improve that with a couple of decent tournaments. The close win over Aljaz Bedene last week in Acapulco will certainly give Fognini a bit more confidence about this match, although he shouldn't take Bedene lightly.

Bedene is beginning to become a feature of playing on the Main Tour after his successes on the Challenger circuit last season and he has reached a Semi Final on the hard courts this season. However, I still think he is finding his feet somewhat and a player like Fognini can make him play one too many balls and that could be the difference.

Michael Llodra - 2.5 games v Daniel Munoz-De La Nava: I think Daniel Munoz-De La Nava is probably being over-rated a little after a good tournament at Delray Beach last week and after qualifying here, but I think the Spaniard may find himself under some pressure from Michael Llodra's serve and volley game.

The courts are slightly slower at Indian Wells and that will give Munoz-De La Nava a chance to get a read on the serve, but the 30 year old Spaniard hasn't enjoyed too much success on the hard courts in his career. This is only his fifth ever match on the Main Tour that has taken place on a hard court and I like Michael Llodra's chances in the match.

Llodra should be able to exert enough pressure behind his serve and should be able to come through the match. I wouldn't be surprised to see a 7-6, 6-3 win for the Frenchman in this one.

MY PICKS: Dmitry Tursunov - 2.5 Games @ 1.95 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Alejandro Falla - 3.5 Games @ 1.90 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Bobby Reynolds @ 2.05 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Fabio Fognini @ 1.92 Bet Fred (2 Units)
Michael Llodra - 2.5 Games @ 1.83 Pinnacle (2 Units)

Weekly Update: 2-0, + 3.66 Units (4 Units Staked, + 91.5% Yield)

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