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Thursday, 6 February 2014

Tennis Picks 2014 (February 6th)

That was an embarrassing day as all three picks fell through the floor, but it makes it worse when you see how close things have come and how silly some of the things that happen that kill the picks. For example, Andrey Golubev serves for the match at 53 in the third set, loses serve but still manages to come through in a tie-break but misses covering the games.

The Christian Garin defeat may look one-sided, but I have never seen anyone miss as many ridiculously easy balls as this kid did- now don't get me wrong, it is tough for a 17 year old to play against a top 50 player on the Tour, but that does not give someone a free pass from missing balls from the middle of the court.

Some of the shot selection was pretty ridiculous too with Garin preferring to go for the fabulous shot that would get the crowd going than trying to put away simple volleys. Again, you have to give some leeway for picking a young player, but I did expect much more of the basics to be completed by him and Garin missed far too many 'easy' shots to get away with beating a player as solid as Jeremy Chardy.

At the end of the day, the worst thing I can say for Garin is that Chardy barely had to get out of first gear as he was being presented with error after error, even from some of the most basic positions of the court. It was clear that Chardy was going to simply keep the ball in play at times and that did lead to him losing his initial break advantage in the first set. However, that was a temporary reprieve for Garvin as he then fell apart.

So that means I haven't picked a winner this week but both Andrey Golubev and Kenny de Schepper couldn't have got much closer to covering without doing so and that is the slight bit of luck that would have turned a big loss into a small one. Outside of the Australian Open, the start of this season has followed a very close trend to the end of last season where that slight bit of good fortune that every one needs has deserted me.

To say I was extremely frustrated watching the way the last two picks went down is an under-statement, but you have to think that bit of luck with come because the players are seemingly in the right positions yet not quite getting over the line when the opportunity presents.

Ivan Dodig v Ivo Karlovic: This will be the fifth meeting between these two Croatian players and the second time that they have played on the indoor hard courts of Zagreb following their clash last season.

At the moment, it is Ivan Dodig who has controlled the matches with four straight wins, but Ivo Karlovic will always give himself a chance with his serve, especially if it is as effective as it was in the First Round when he fired down 44 aces in the win over Daniel Brands.

Dodig himself has a decent serve and is comfortable getting forward to the net and will keep the pressure on Karlovic to make passes, while he will also attempt to attack the second serve by getting forward to the net.

Their matches have been close, even the straight sets win for Dodig at the Australian Open, but I think the younger player is a little too athletic and will find a way to come through this in three sets.

Federico Delbonis - 3.5 games v Taro Daniel: The young player from Japan caused a surprise in the First Round when he beat Thomaz Bellucci in straight sets, but I think Taro Daniel will find it tough to back that up against Federico Delbonis.

Delbonis made his breakthrough on the ATP Tour by reaching the Final in Hamburg last summer, which included a win over Roger Federer in the Semi Final, and he looked good in the First Round too.

His clay court pedigree should prove to be the difference in this Second Round match with this being Delbonis' favourite surface. He served well in the First Round and anything similar to that will keep the pressure on Daniel in this match too and should produce opportunities for Delbonis to break serve.

I believe Delbonis may take a few games to get into the match as he probably hasn't seen much of Daniel before, but I think he will prove too strong and come through 64, 63.

MY PICKS: Ivan Dodig @ 1.85 Pinnacle (2 Units)
Federico Delbonis - 3.5 Games @ 1.73 Bet Fred (2 Units)

Weekly Update: 0-5, - 9 Units (9 Units Staked, - 100% Yield)

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