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Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Tennis Picks 2016 (October 18th)

This is the final week of the WTA Tour before the WTA Finals begin next week and that means there are still some players out there who are desperate to make it into the top eight.

More room has opened up after Serena Williams decided to withdraw from the tournament with an injury she wishes to recuperate in time for the start of the 2017 season. There are also questions about how healthy Garbine Muguruza and Johanna Konta will be going into the event in Singapore so there has to be a fear that the WTA Finals are not as strong as it should be this year.

There are plenty of ATP events being played this week too as the Race for London begins to heat up too, although the majority of the big names are taking a week to prepare for some ATP 500 events yet to come this season.

Fabio Fognini - 2.5 games v Ricardas Berankis: I will say that I don't think I will ever truly trust Fabio Fognini when it comes to asking him to cover handicaps, especially when he is favoured to win the match. Too often Fognini can bring a really poor attitude to the court, but I do think this is a good spot to back the Italian against Ricardas Berankis.

There is no doubting the talent that Berankis has, but he has to work hard for everything he earns on the court and recent form has not been the best. A retirement saw Berankis end his last match early while he has not been playing at the level that Fognini has been and I think that can play a part in this match.

I can imagine plenty of long rallies between two players that don't have the biggest serves and I also think there will be breaks of serve for both players. It is the kind of match that you could see Fognini losing, but the form of Berankis doesn't scream out upset and I think ultimately the Italian will be too good in this one.

It might need three sets, but Fognini can win this one 57, 63, 64 to move through.

Fernando Verdasco - 4.5 games v Mikael Ymer: The home crowd in Stockholm will get to see the Ymer brothers back to back on Tuesday as the big hopes of Swedish tennis play in this main tournament draw. It is a big test for Ymer in this one as he takes on veteran Fernando Verdasco without a lot of tennis behind him.

Ymer has spent the majority of this season on the sidelines and will be playing his first hard court event of 2016 when he comes into this match. That is a tough spot to be in especially when playing someone like Verdasco who has the power to push Ymer back and really pressurise him throughout in this match.

This is the kind of pace that Ymer won't have faced too often and I think Verdasco being a lefty is another challenge for the youngster to try and overcome. It feels like it could be a long day for Ymer even if Verdasco is far from at the level he reached during his peak years on the Tour.

It can be tough to really know what to expect from Verdasco who has not been in the best form. However I think he is going to be a little too strong and a little too savvy for Ymer and I can see Verdasco being able to put together a 64, 63 win.

MY PICKS: Fabio Fognini - 2.5 Games @ 1.83 William Hill (2 Units)
Fernando Verdasco - 4.5 Games @ 1.80 Sky Bet (2 Units)

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