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Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Tennis Picks 2015 (February 10th)

Last week was a disappointing one for the picks and I decided against making any outright picks this week despite a few more of the bigger names returning to competitive action for the first time since the Australian Open.

The tournament in Rotterdam is actually an ATP 500 event so it is no surprise that is has attracted the best field of the week, although the lack of recent action makes it tough to actually predict a winner. Andy Murray is the top Seed and the favourite at the layers, but he has to prove he can bounce back from a big defeat in the Australian Open Final and has to be on his top form from the very first moment he steps back on court.

Finding a winner from the events in Sao Paulo and Memphis was also a little difficult and I wasn't convinced enough to actually make any outright picks from any of the events taking place.

I then decided to skip any picks for Monday after looking through the schedule and not really seeing a match worth getting involved in. There were a couple of intriguing options, but nothing that really stood out for me and so it was better to stay on the cautious side of the road and not push to make a pick I wasn't that happy with.

Bernard Tomic - 3.5 games v Igor Sijsling: Bernard Tomic was supposed to be the future of men's tennis in Australia, but the recent Grand Slam at Melbourne Park may have shown that there are two younger players ready to breakthrough ahead of him. In fact, Nick Krygios is already Ranked higher than Tomic and this should be a motivating factor for a player that was tipped for the top of the men's game over the last few years.

He travels to Memphis for his first tournament since reaching the Fourth Round in his home Grand Slam and Tomic has to look at his early season form as a positive for the rest of 2015. However, he has flattered to deceive in the past with a lot of good results at home before falling away the rest of the way.

The draw in Memphis looks a decent one to get Tomic going as he faces Igor Sijsling, a Dutch player he dismissed for the loss of three games in Sydney earlier this season. I doubt Sijsling falls apart that easily again, but he will be getting a little frustrated by Tomic's ability to put the ball back in play and that could lead to mistakes as Sijsling looks to aim closer and closer to the lines.

Tomic will have to serve well, but doing that could lead to a 63, 76 win and a place in the Second Round.

Steve Johnson - 3.5 games v Dudi Sela: He might not have the same 'high profile name' as someone like John Isner in the United States, but Steve Johnson has shown signs in the 2015 season that he is going to make another move up the Rankings. He has won the matches he is supposed to win and come close in defeats to players Ranked much higher than himself, but that is the good way to build up and produce the results that see a positive move.

Dudi Sela is definitely the kind of player that Johnson will be expected to beat if he is to make a move into the top 40 in the World Rankings and I do think he will be too strong for the Israeli player in this one.

For all the hard work that Sela puts in, his game is not the biggest and that will give opponents a chance to dictate a lot of the points. Sela's serve can be a little bit of a weakness too and Johnson should have chances to break serve, while the American is a stereotypical player from North America who relies on a big serve and heavy forehand to produce the wins.

There might be a tie-breaker to separate them in one set, but I do think Johnson has enough to come through 76, 63.

Carlos Berlocq - 2.5 games v Guido Pella: Guido Pella has been playing a lot of clay court tennis over the last month and he came through the qualifiers to reach the main draw in Sao Paulo, but I still think his compatriot Carlos Berlocq gets the better of him in this First Round match.

This is the time of the season when Berlocq will be expecting to pick up a lot of Ranking points as the majority of his success comes on the clay courts. Being his first match back on the red dirt is an issue, but he is used to doing that and has the game that can irritate Pella to the point of self-combusting.

There have been times I have looked at Pella and though he had all the tools to really move up the Rankings, but injuries and poor form have prevented it really being put together. I also think there is a lot of tennis in the legs of Pella having had to win three qualifiers that all went the distance and that might also play a part in a match where Berlocq won't mind getting involved in extended rallies.

Pella might win a set, but this looks like a match that Berlocq will come through with a 46, 64, 63 win.

Thomaz Bellucci - 1.5 games v Martin Klizan: The home crowd should be firmly behind Thomaz Bellucci who reached the Semi Final in Quito last week and I think he can back that up with another strong week on the Tour.

This is probably one of the tougher First Round matches he could have asked for with Martin Klizan a Seeded player, but the Slovakian has been inconsistent at best to open the 2015 season. Bellucci also beat Klizan here twelve months ago when both were forced to come through the qualifiers and the conditions should favour the Brazilian who produces his best stuff on the clay courts.

The longer week in Quito may be a detriment to Bellucci, but I think he has the better clay court pedigree of these two players and I think his serve can be better protected on the slower surfaces. He finally put some wins together last week to give him a boost in confidence and I think the home crowd will be a big help to him to keep the motivation levels up.

This is another match that could have a few twists and turns in it before the final result is produced and I won't be surprised if both win a set. However, I like Bellucci to come through with a 75, 67, 63 win.

MY PICKS: Bernard Tomic - 3.5 Games @ 1.92 Bet Fred (2 Units)
Steve Johnson - 3.5 Games @ 1.80 Bet Fred (2 Units)
Carlos Berlocq - 2.5 Games @ 1.80 Bet Victor (2 Units)
Thomaz Bellucci - 1.5 Games @ 1.83 Bet Victor (2 Units)

February 2-8 Daily Picks Final6-8, - 5.48 Units (28 Units Staked, - 19.57% Yield)
February 2-8 Outright Picks Final0-2, - 4 Units (4 Units Staked, - 100 % Yield)

Season 2015+ 17.87 Units (153 Units Staked, + 11.68% Yield)

Season 2014+ 45.05 Units (1586.5 Units Staked, + 2.84% Yield)
Season 2013+ 21.74 Units (1251.5 Units Staked, + 1.73% Yield)
Season 2012+ 49.21 Units (855 Units Staked, + 5.76% Yield)
Season 2011+ 82.02 Units

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