Lukas Lacko - 1.5 games v Benjamin Becker: One of the more inconsistent players on the Tour has fallen out of the top 100 because of injuries in 2013, but Lukas Lacko should still have too much in the locker for Benjamin Becker in this First Round match.
There have been a few times I have watched Lacko and I have seen a player that has a lot of the tools to play in the top 50, perhaps even more, but the inconsistency in his play is hard to get a handle on.
Lacko had a disappointing loss in Zagreb last week, but he has a decent indoor hard court pedigree on the Challenger Tour and Becker doesn't represent a big step up in class compared to that level of play.
The German has a decent serve, but Becker struggles with his own consistency although I believe his current Ranking of 88 is more realistic than Lacko being out of the top 100. Becker did reach the Quarter Final on the indoor hard courts of Metz last year, but he generally doesn't quite have enough to keep his performance up to the level required and I think Lacko wins this match in straight sets.
Christian Garin + 3.5 games v Filippo Volandri: After the performance last week, I am perhaps surprising myself that I am picking Christian Garin to cover the spread in this First Round match, but I do think there were elements of his game that could bode well for him against the veteran Filippo Volandri.
There were signs that Christian Garin could be a really good player, but he has to show more consistency off the ground and can't afford to miss the same amount of easy put-aways that he did in the loss to Jeremy Chardy.
He will have chances against Volandri to at least keep the match competitive as the Italian has one of the poorer serves on the Tour, but I also have to respect that he is still a 'gate-keeper' on a clay court as he remains dominant below the main Tour level.
That should give Volandri the ability to win this match, but he also can fall apart in sets thanks to his weak serve and I think Garin can keep this competitive through the contest.
Robin Haase v Martin Alund: Changing surfaces can always lead to problems early on and that is what faces Robin Haase against the qualifier Martin Alund who has proved effective on the clay courts below the main Tour level but not transferred that to the main draws on too many occasions.
It has been a tough start to 2014 for Robin Haase too which raises more doubts about the match, but the Dutchman won a Davis Cup tie for his country which could spark some form after his best season on the Tour in 2013.
The clay courts are also his favoured surface, but Haase is maddeningly inconsistent, although he should get plenty of chances to recover breaks of serve against Alund.
While I do have some doubts about Haase considering the long travel to South America and this being his first clay court match of the season, I still think he should be a stronger favourite to win the match and like him to come through, possibly in three sets though.
Lukas Lacko - 1.5 Games @ 1.80 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Christian Garin + 3.5 Games @ 1.90 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Robin Haase @ 1.85 Bwin (2 Units)