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Saturday, 24 October 2015

Tennis Picks 2015 (October 24th)

The WTA Finals Groups were drawn on Friday and that tournament begins on Sunday, but the focus before that will be to conclude the final tournaments of the season the WTA Tour.

Those events in Luxembourg and Moscow conclude in the next couple of days as do the three ATP tournaments in Moscow, Stockholm and Vienna where it looks like David Ferrer is going to be the player who takes advantage of others slipping up in a bid to reach the ATP World Tour Finals.

Next week Basel is the big tournament to try and take some more points and put them in the bank for those chasing a top eight spot for London, but it does look like it is going to be tough for anyone outside of the current top eight to make it. Only Andy Murray withdrawing from the event would make the next two weeks very exciting as it would open up the ninth spot for a place in the World Tour Finals and there are up to five players that potentially fit into that spot.

It looks like it will be a controversial decision when Murray decides what to do about the World Tour Finals, but I think I can see a situation where he perhaps begins the event and then pull out if he loses his first Group game. There is no doubt the Davis Cup Final looks the most important match that Andy Murray is going to be play in the remainder of the 2015 season and he has openly admitted he needs days to be ready to compete on a clay court.

Playing in the Group at least gives the fans what they want, although I am not sure his 'tanking' would be particularly good viewing if Murray is simply there to honour his commitments.

If it was me, I would probably give up the Tour Finals and make sure I have put in the time and effort I know it is going to take to transition onto the clay courts and I don't think I would play too much tennis between now and then. Maybe take in the Paris Masters as that prevents any competitive rustiness, but the Tour Finals would certainly be an event I would look to miss if I was Murray.

Tomas Berdych - 3.5 games v Marcos Baghdatis: The Semi Final in Stockholm I have focused on is Tomas Berdych facing Marcos Baghdatis and I do like the top ten player to come through in straight sets and ensure he covers this number.

It is unlikely that Berdych will ever pick up a Grand Slam title and that might make it seem his career has been an underachievement for the potential he showed. However, it isn't easy to be as consistent as he has been and I think he is playing well enough this week to see of Baghdatis' challenge.

It has been a very good week for Baghdatis up to this point, but it feels strange to say he is only three months older than Berdych considering the drop he has had in the Rankings in recent years. That is down to injury as much as a loss of consistency though and Baghdatis is still capable of these big weeks.

His talent has seen him hold the head to head advantage over Berdych, but things might have changed too much the other way in the intervening five years since they last played. Berdych should have a serve that can keep Baghdatis at bay and I always think the Cypriot doesn't get enough first serves in to really compete for long enough to win matches consistently.

Once Berdych gets a feel for the second serve, I like him to win this match 64, 64 and move into another Final this month.

David Ferrer - 2.5 games v Gael Monfils: After an up and down 2014, it goes to show how solid David Ferrer's 2015 season has been that he is set to reach the World Tour Finals again despite missing a large portion of the season through injury.

Ferrer has been in some good form this week, but he runs into a tough Semi Final opponent in Gael Monfils who has battled through difficult moments. It is a very good run considering Monfils has just returned to the Tour from an injury from the US Open which kept him out of the Asian swing.

His athleticism gave Ferrer plenty of problems when they met the first three times, although it was the mental strength of coming through in best of five setters in Grand Slam and Davis Cup matches that impressed from Monfils.

Things might have changed though as Ferrer has crushed Monfils the last two times they have played and I think the Spaniard has enough motivation to go on and win this tournament. It might take three sets to win this one with the way Monfils has been playing but I like Ferrer to find his way to a 63, 46, 64 win.

MY PICKS: Tomas Berdych - 3.5 Games @ 1.73 Ladbrokes (2 Units)
David Ferrer - 2.5 Games @ 1.80 Ladbrokes (2 Units)

Weekly Update: 5-7, - 5.26 Units Staked (24 Units Staked, - 21.92% Yield)

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