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Saturday, 13 July 2013

Tennis Picks 2013 (July 13th)

Friday looked like being a total disaster in terms of the picks this week- it has been a strong week, but exits for Tomas Berdych and Gael Monfils in Bastad and Stuttgart respectively means two out three outright picks are out.

However, the daily picks are still in a strong position despite the first losing day of the week and there is still the positive of Lleyton Hewitt being involved in Newport after he came from a set down to win his Quarter Final. Hewitt will need to play a lot better if he is to get past John Isner in the Semi Final, a repeat of the Final from last year, especially with his first serve percentage being too low at the moment.

The Australian will know that he can't afford to let Isner get involved in his service games as it will be tough to break him at a tournament where Isner has won back to back titles. The winner of that match will feel they are the favourites to win the tournament, although Nicolas Mahut will certainly have something to say about that with one grass court title under his belt this season.

It is Semi Final day on Saturday and these are my picks:

Fernando Verdasco v Grigor Dimitrov: I have backed Fernando Verdasco in the last two Rounds here and I think he is worth chancing one more time at least in this Semi Final against Grigor Dimitrov.

Verdasco played erratically against Nicolas Almagro in his Quarter Final and those errors can look terrible at times- he missed plenty of easy shots, but he remained aggressive in that match and had his compatriot in defensive positions for a lot of the match.

Grigor Dimitrov came through pretty comfortably against Juan Monaco in the last Round and he has had some big performances on the clay courts this season already. While his profile has been raised by some of those results, Dimitrov can still be a little too inconsistent for me and I think this match will have both players fluctuating their levels between the poor and world class.

I think the Verdasco aggression may help the Spaniard find a way past Dimitrov in this one- his lefty serve is setting up points very effectively at the moment and as long as he can keep hold of his errors and the loose shots, I think he will put a lot of pressure on the youngster.

I like Dimitrov and the way he approaches the game, but Verdasco is a player in form and has looked very motivated this week. I think he is still the more capable of the two on the clay and I think he finds a way to get through in three sets.

Nicolas Mahut - 3.5 games v Michael Russell: Nicolas Mahut always had the game to be dangerous on the grass courts and this season he has fulfilled some of those expectations by winning his first tournament on the surface.

Confidence has to be high in the Frenchman with the amount of wins he has had over the last month and he has come through the first three Rounds here fairly comfortably. Even the win in the Quarter Final was a lot easier than the 64, 76 scoreline would indicate.

I expect Mahut to hold on to serve for most of the match, although Michael Russell shouldn't be underestimated with the veteran believing he is playing as well now as he has at any point in his career. However, Russell has a lot of tennis in his legs over the last couple of weeks and that could finally catch up with him, especially after the three tiebreaks he needed to see of Igor Sijsling in the Quarter Finals.

If Mahut continues to serve at the level we saw in the last Round, I expect he will have a little too much for Russell in this one and come through 75, 64.

Klara Zakopalova + 5.5 games v Sara Errani: Sara Errani was a big favourite to win the tournament in Palermo before the event began, but she could find it a tougher Semi Final than the layers imagine.

While I expect Errani to have plenty of success against the Klara Zakopalova serve, I also believe the latter has the power to hit through the Italian and will be able to earn the chance to break her serve on a number of occasions.

There is no doubt that Zakopalova can be very erratic at times, but she has pushed some of the best players on the Tour in the past and she should have plenty of confidence having reached the Semi Final here.

I don't think Zakopalova wins the match, but I do think she has a chance to at least make it competitive and so I will take the games in this one.

MY PICKS: Fernando Verdasco @ 1.80 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Nicolas Mahut - 3.5 Games @ 1.92 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Klara Zakopalova + 5.5 Games @ 2.10 Pinnacle (2 Units)

Weekly Update+ 16.30 Units (36 Units Staked, + 45.28% Yield)

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