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Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Tennis Picks 2015 (October 6th)

Two positive weeks have pulled the season total out of a really poor position and there is every chance I can end with another winning season, although not likely one that matches the success of the last few years.

The tournaments have moved to Beijing, where both ATP and WTA events are being held, as well as Tokyo before the final leg of the Asian swing takes place in Shanghai next week. There are some big names out on the Tour this week too, especially with four places in London still up for grabs although the most excitement might be for the player who fights into the ninth position as Andy Murray might seriously consider pulling out of the World Tour Finals.

Otherwise you would think the top eight players already have big advantages barring some very early exits in the coming few weeks and someone like Richard Gasquet putting together some really strong weeks to make up the deficit. We will know more after this week and there are plenty of points still to play for over the last month of the season to perhaps see some things change going forward.

Caroline Garcia v Sara Errani: Caroline Garcia beat Sara Errani last week in Wuhan and I think she can frank that form by battling through in three sets this week too. Both players have won their first match in Beijing in relatively straight-forward fashion, although Errani's win over Petra Kvitova is far more impressive than the one Garcia put together this week.

The Italian may also point to having had a long week prior to the defeat to Garcia in Wuhan, but that also means Garcia has improved to 3-1 in the head to head against the veteran.

You'll always have a chance to create break points on the Errani serve so it won't be a surprise if Garcia can keep her under pressure on that aspect of her game. The key for Garcia in this match is to serve well and make Errani feel the scoreboard pressure and it is Garcia who has created more break points in two of their previous four matches with one seeing them create the exact same number of opportunities.

I do believe Garcia will have more break points in this one, but she has to make sure she punishes the weakest shot that Errani possesses and then get in enough first serves to win her own service games. Doing that should see her edge out Errani in three sets and I will back to do that.

Jeremy Chardy - 2.5 games v Sam Groth: It might be a harsh description, but I can understand why some people are down on Sam Groth and dismiss him as little more than a big server. There isn't a lot more to his game and I think Groth will be the first to admit that he is all about getting pressure on opponents by attacking the net where possible and using a very big frame to put away volleys.

It might not be to everyone's liking, but Groth has made some leaps in the World Ranking and can't be underestimated especially if his opponent is not serving effectively.

He plays Jeremy Chardy who has a decent serve of his own, but who is off a disappointing loss in Kuala Lumper last week. However, I think Chardy is capable of getting enough balls back in play to negate the Groth serve and perhaps force him to try and make some awkward volleys which leads to a victory in the match.

Groth hasn't been in the best of form over the last couple of months and I like Chardy wearing him down in a 76, 64 win.

Stan Wawrinka - 3.5 games v Radek Stepanek: Stan Wawrinka admitted that he isn't feeling the pressure of playing at this time of the year with his goals for the season already achieved. He believes it will help him bring his best tennis to the court over the last six weeks of the season which will culminate in another appearance at the World Tour Finals in London.

He has a terrible record against Radek Stepanek which can be turned around here though as the veteran really hasn't been himself after injuries have affected his entire season.

While he can still be an awkward customer on the court, Stepanek has lost a lot of matches that he might have expected to win even twelve months ago. Last week he played David Ferrer tough for a set before falling off that level and I am expecting a similar thing to happen against Stan Wawrinka.

One concern is Wawrinka pulling out in Metz which might be a lingering issue here, although I think that had more to do with the Davis Cup exploits just days earlier. As long as Wawrinka is focused on the task at hand, I think he wins this one 75, 63.

Novak Djokovic - 5.5 games v Simone Bolelli: This is the first match that Novak Djokovic will play since winning the US Open, but Beijing has proved to be a very happy hunting ground for him in the past. Djokovic has won the event five times in the past, including in each of the last three years and he has made a very strong start here each time.

Some players love certain conditions and while the World Number 1 is comfortable on most courts around the world, he seems particularly at home here. This is also a portion of the season where Djokovic doesn't take his foot off the gas and he enjoys his time on the courts.

Djokovic has won all four previous matches against Simone Bolelli although they haven't played one another since 2009. The Italian has been playing some good tennis through 2015 but he is inconsistent and he might have given Djokovic more motivation to really bring his best tennis to the table in this one.

That is because Bolelli came through the Qualifiers to reach the main draw, although one of the players he beat was Novak's younger brother Djordje. The fact he handed out a bagel in that defeat might not sit well with the World Number 1 and can prove to be a reason why his focus is completely on winning this game by a big margin to make a point.

I don't expect Djokovic to go rashly looking for the winning points as soon as possible, but I also don't expect him to give much away and win this one 63, 62.

MY PICKS: Caroline Garcia @ 1.85 Bet Victor (2 Units)
Jeremy Chardy - 2.5 Games @ 1.83 Paddy Power (2 Units)
Stan Wawrinka - 3.5 Games @ 1.75 Bet Victor (2 Units)
Novak Djokovic - 5.5 Games @ 1.73 Sky Bet (2 Units)

Weekly Final9-6, + 4.10 Units (30 Units Staked, + 13.67% Yield)

Season 2015+ 0.55 Units (1610 Units Staked, + 0% 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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