October 2013 Archive

31st October Match Previews   


Is motivation from the top players guaranteed today?


I would say that in 7 months of writing daily match previews today's is the hardest that I've had to write - the reason being is that it is almost impossible to know which players will be trying today!


On the surface, there's definite value on five of the players already guaranteeing themselves a place at next weeks ATP Tour Finals - Rafael Nadal, Tomas Berdych, Roger Federer, Juan Martin Del Potro and Novak Djokovic but of course these prices come with a huge caveat in that having qualified already, the players may wish to take it easy this week and an early exit may not be as much of a blow as it usually might be.


As my tournament preview mentioned, with only one of the top two players in the world having got to the final in the last ten years and huge success for players ranked outside the top 10 here in Paris there's clear history that these top players do not consistently give their all.


Whilst I feel all players represent value (despite all but Berdych still being priced under 1.50), it's tough to recommend an in-play line on them as should they fall behind by a break or set and giving a better price, I wouldn't want to rely on them recovering that deficit here.


One player that may well give full effort is defending champion David Ferrer as he has ranking points to defend, and has little realistic chance of a big impact next week.  Ferrer not trying is almost unheard of.  He's priced at 1.42 against Gilles Simon and that seems fair to me.  


Projected holds are very low which is unsurprising given both players are stronger on return than serve and there could well be some breaks and swings in this.


As Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet subscribers will be aware,  Ferrer giving up a break lead 32.6% in 2013 and Simon recovering a deficit 43.7%, laying Ferrer a break up can definitely be considered.


On the flip side, so can laying Simon a break up as well.  He's given up a break 39.6% in 2013, and with Ferrer recovering a break deficit 48.4% both scenarios are above the 75% combined score as mentioned in my recent Break Back Percentages article.


In the 'Tournament of Champions' in Sofia, there are three more matches, two of which don't involve champions...


Tsvetana Pironkova superbly justified her wild card being demolished by Ana Ivanovic in her first match and I'd be surprised if she caused Elena Vesnina many problems.


The Bulgarian has a low projected hold for this, and so does Elina Svitolina against the incredible Simona Halep.


However, having already qualified, Halep may well ease off though and perhaps at odds not far off 10.00 Svitolina can cause an upset.  Certainly I wouldn't be a Halep backer at 1.10 given the format of this event.


Ana Ivanovic appeared to be some value at just over evens against Sam Stosur with the hold/break stats indicating she should be slight favourite but when you consider her atrocious record against top 20 players when priced 2.00 to 2.99 (she's 8-20 in this scenario) then it's tough to be on her side here in what promises to be a pretty tough match between the two players in their group who won their opening match.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


30th October Match Previews


Pablo Andujar should struggle to hold serve today against Tomas Berdych...


We have 12 round of 32 matches in the Paris Masters today and having looked at the results so far it's plain to see that things have gone as the historical trend indicated with 13 underdogs and just 6 favourites winning from the 20 matches so far - Mahut vs Dolgopolov was basically evens apiece so I discounted assessing that.  


One favourite I do think who will do things fairly easily today is Tomas Berdych as he takes on Pablo Andujar (above, pictured).  


Even at 1.09 I feel there's value on the Czech but I'm looking to see if this rises in play. 


Andujar has a very low projected hold for this - on hard/indoor in the past year he's only held serve 60.4% in 22 matches so against a high quality opponent he should struggle to hold consistently.


Furthermore, when a break up the Spaniard doesn't impress, giving up a break lead 48.3% of the time in 2013.  With Berdych recovering a break deficit 47.5% (these stats are well above top 100 average) backing Berdych a break down is an avenue that should have high positive expectation.


There's not much other value pre-match in the ATP today in my opinion, but it will be interesting to see the match between Fabio Fognini and Grigor Dimitrov.


The Bulgarian tanked their only previous career meeting, in January in Sydney and priced at 4.05, Fognini won easily in straight sets.


Fognini is a little shorter today at 3.25 and it's possibly slight value against a player that could now be pretty tired after a long two weeks and a long three set match against Michael Llodra yesterday.  


However backing the volatile Italian on hard/indoor is something I'm not a particular fan of so this slight value does not get me excited!


Whilst Fognini gives up a break lead way more than average (and for a player of his ability) - 45.5% in 2013 - which shows how he lacks consistency and concentration, Dimitrov's stats for break down recovery are awful with him doing so just 22.2% in 2013.  Laying Fognini a break up cannot be considered.


Dimitrov gives up a break lead 35.9% in 2013 but Fognini doesn't have the 'bouncebackability' either, recovering a break loss just 31.6% of the time.  


Neither player has specific trends in the early or late parts of a match.


Whilst Fognini has a low projected hold it's tough to recommend viable avenues here.


In WTA action at the 'Tournament of Champions' (with 2 players not being Champions) in SofiaElina Svitolina is in the event as an alternate due to Maria Kirilenko's withdrawal and she takes on Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who was the next player to be victim to the juggernaut that is Simona Halep yesterday.


Pav is priced at 1.29 today and I feel that's a little short.  Of course she should be favourite but Svitolina is a talented young player who has made great strides this year - to have a 54% winrate at the age of 18/19 on the WTA Tour is not to be sniffed at.


Svitolina's main problem is taking break points as she's only won 46% compared to 45.7% of normal points.  Whilst this sounds good on the surface, the WTA average is to take 1.8% more and in the last three months Svitolina's break point won percentage has gone down to a mere 32.3% - 10.8% below her overall return points won.  That's why her record in this time is 3-7, not because she's playing badly, but because she's not winning the key points.


On that basis it's tough to back Svitolina here despite the reflected value but if she can improve her key point stats there's no doubt she is a player of high potential.


Finally I feel Sam Stosur may be a little short at 1.35 against Elena Vesnina - projected holds are a little above average with a high break point clutch score for both so don't expect a bundle of breaks.


A lay to back on Stosur is a little tempting but I'll probably pass.  On a day of little value I may not get involved too much.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


29th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/tursunov.jpg

Dmitry Tursunov has much better hard/indoor stats than opponent Marcel Granollers...


It's day two of the Paris Masters with eleven matches scheduled in the French capital today.  There's also three in the WTA 'Tournament of Champions' in Sofia, which bizarrely also includes home player Tsvetana Pironkova who has won just 11 of 33 matches this season, and is ranked 118 in the world.


On that basis I'm considering a petition to get Dan Evans a wildcard into the ATP tour finals next week...


Last year there were 1.1% above average service holds for the indoor hard surface in Sofia and with the tournament having had just one year at the venue that's all I have to go on. 


The matches appear fairly well priced with perhaps there being a little value on Alize Cornet at 2.45 against Maria Kirilenko who may not be fully fit but it's not nearly a big enough price for me to want to invest in the volatile Frenchwoman.


In ATP action in Paris, I like the 1.57 about Dmitry Tursunov (above, pictured) as he takes on Marcel Granollers.  


On hard/indoor in the past year, he's held serve 82.5% to 73.2% and broken 22.2% to 21.8%, and according to the TennisRatings Daily Spreadsheet he also has a much better break point clutch score, so he should perform much better in the key points.


Also, with Granollers underwhelming in his favourite tournament Valencia last week and his eyes may now be on the ATP Tour Finals where he plays doubles with Marc Lopez.


Combined with the poor break point clutch score and being no value, Granollers also has a low projected hold so laying his serve when the match is on serve should work well.  However both players have below average stats for recovering from a break deficit so laying the player a break up cannot be recommended (it's better if it's Granollers, but there isn't much in it).


There are two matches today where players needing vital ranking points to qualify for the ATP Tour Finals are playing.


Both Richard Gasquet and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga need a good run here and motivation should be ensured - which cannot be at all said for a large portion of this week's field.


Gasquet was value at 1.53 overnight but has been cut to a more realistic 1.45 now against Fernando Verdasco, who has a low projected hold for their clash.


With Verdasco letting a break lead slip 33.3% of the time (marginally above average) and Gasquet recovering a deficit 45.9% laying Verdasco's serve, either when the match is on serve (when realistically possible) or a break up should be very viable.


Finally Tsonga takes on Kei Nishikori who surprised a few people with a comfortable win over Julien Benneteau yesterday.


Actually the Japanese has marginally better combined hold/break indoor hard/hard stats (Tsonga is stronger on serve but Nishikori much better on return) and depending on his motivation this may not be easy for Tsonga. 


Tsonga has much better break point stats and this ability on key points should get him through eventually.  He's incredibly strong when a break up, leading the tour stats.  He's only given up a break lead 9.38% in 2013 so laying him a break up would not be a line which has positive expectation.


Finally, there's potential for several underdogs with more motivation to get through today.


Michael Llodra is defending semi-finals points and might find Grigor Dimitrov not particularly interested after a long couple of weeks. 


Kevin Anderson seems generously priced against Mikhail Youzhny who is the only finalist from Sunday to be playing today, so may be pretty fatigued.


And the match between Nicolas Mahut and Alexandr Dolgopolov is evens apiece and I much prefer the chances of the Frenchman on home soil in this.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


28th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/nishikori.jpg

Kei Nishikori is friendless in the market after last week's 'display' against Ivan Dodig...


There's just 9 ATP matches on the opening day of the Paris Masters and effectively I'm treating those as 8 with the condition of Marin Cilic completely unknown with the Croat coming back from a 5 month suspension from tour.  Unless someone has inside information, any position on this pre-match would be purely guesswork. 


The Tournament Preview can be viewed below and shows that perhaps the Paris courts are not quite as slow as some think with service holds above the ATP average in two of the past three years, and this will have an effect on projected holds this week.


There's only one match where projected holds are both low as Kei Nishikori (above, pictured), takes on Julien Benneteau with the Japanese talent having little market support drifting from an opening 1.70 with Pinnacle to a current 2.06.  


That comes after his awful performance against Ivan Dodig last week and with the Frenchman having a superb record on indoor hard in the past year there's going to be little in this.


As I said, projected holds are both low and as can be viewed in the TennisRatings Daily Spreadsheet both players' break point clutch score is also low.


Both players are exceptional at recovering from a break deficit, with Benneteau doing so 48.6% in 2013, and Nishikori 46.2% - much above the top 100 ATP average of 35.4%.


Benneteau gives up a break lead 38.9% with Nishikori better at 27.6%.  


In normal circumstances this would mean that laying Benneteau a break up would be extremely viable but given Nishikori's highly questionable motivation last week I'd want to be sure he's giving his best efforts before doing so.


There's not a huge amount for me to get excited in other matches, but I'd feel Ernests Gulbis represents value at 1.57 (from an overnight 1.62) against Fernando Verdasco if it wasn't for the huge trend against 1.50-1.99 favourites at this venue.


On hard/indoor in the past year, the temperamental Latvian has held 84.0% to 77.9%, and broken 27.1% to 21.1%, so there's a clear ability differential here.  


He also has significantly better break point stats but has a poor record against left handers, generating a -18% ROI in his last 50 matches against lefties. 


Verdasco has a low projected hold and a low break point clutch score so opposing his serve in-play should be viable.   


According to the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet, Verdasco gives up a break lead around average at 33.3% whilst Gulbis recovers a deficit a strong 42.0% of the time.  So laying Verdasco a break up should also show a positive expectation, assuming Gulbis is motivated.


With Gulbis only losing a break lead 23.0% of the time (this ranks him in the top 20 of the ATP) I wouldn't recommend the opposite move...


I'm also tempted to side with the qualifier Bernard Tomic against Feliciano Lopez and I'm fairly surprised to see him drift to 1.96 overnight.  


The fact that Tomic, whose motivation is frequently in question, got through qualifying (including a victory over the in-form Ivo Karlovic) should mean he wants to be here this week and with Lopez succumbing to a thrashing by Julien Benneteau last week his motivation is much more in question for me.


On hard/indoor in the last year, Tomic has held 82.7% to 81.6%, and broken 17.1% to 15.9%.  This, combined with his better break point stats, mean he should be around the 1.75 mark and this SP represents some value.


As the Australian has a high projected hold and good break point clutch score, I like backing him when losing on serve at points illustrated by the TennisRatings Trading Handbook.  


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


25th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/dimitrov.jpg

I feel Grigor Dimitrov is ridiculously over-rated currently...


There's a very interesting day in prospect with the final day of round robin matches at the WTA Tour Championships in Istanbul being played with all three matches featuring players who need a win to progress, and a match of particular interest between Angelique Kerber and Petra Kvitova as it is a winner takes all clash for the second spot in the Red Group behind the imperious Serena Williams.


I'm not surprised Kerber is slight favourite for this - the market loves a dominant victory in the previous match - but I'm very surprised to see Kerber as favourite for this for a several more logical reasons.


Firstly, Agnieszka Radwanska (who Kerber beat yesterday) always tends to struggle against left handers and having lost both matches already was always going to struggle with motivation.  So I'm going to completely disregard yesterday's match.


Secondly, Kvitova has a superb record against fellow left handers, losing a mere 6 of 26 career matches against lefties, generating a very nice 21% ROI in that sample.  Kerber has a losing record against fellow lefties herself, winning 17 and losing 19 career matches, with an ROI of -15%.


Kvitova boasts marginally stronger serving stats on hard or indoor hard, with Kerber being stronger on return.  However Kvitova has a much stronger break point clutch score (as indicated by the TennisRatings Daily Spreadsheet) and this ability to win key points could also be critical today.


In the other two matches, I'd be surprised if Jelena Jankovic lost to Sara Errani - whilst projected holds are low and close, Errani has been struggling with injury this week and having already been as good as eliminated, will have little to play for (apart from the $140,000 for a group win anyway...).


Victoria Azarenka has struggled this week and prices of around evens apiece look reasonably fair against Li Na.  Projected holds are also low for this and it's worth mentioning in their last meeting - the final of the Australian Open in January - there were 16 breaks of serve in 29 games...


There's 8 quarter finals in the ATP today and I'm going to focus the first preview on a player who many consider to be the new Federer, Grigor Dimitrov, against the current Federer, Roger Federer.


Let me start by saying that I don't consider myself in that group and I'd be surprised if Dimitrov got much further than top 10-20 in his career.  I think he is horrifically over-rated, as defeats this season at short prices indicate. 


These include a blatant tank in Sydney against Fabio Fognini (SP 1.28) after success in Brisbane, Grega Zemlja (SP 1.22) at Wimbledon, Marcel Granollers (SP 1.25) at Montreal and the worst - 1.07 SP against Joao Sousa at the US Open.


Opposing Dimitrov has worked pretty well this season and I see his price as ridiculously short today.  Federer at 1.57 in his home tournament in Basel where he has had huge success, indoor (where also Federer has had superb results) and the fact that even with Federer's decline factored in, he has much better stats than the over-rated Bulgarian this year.


On hard/indoor this year this Swiss legend has held 3.4% more and broken 5.9% more and generally those matches have come against better quality opponents as well.  I priced Federer much shorter than current prices.


It's only several days ago that punters were piling into Radek Stepanek for his first round match against Dimitrov expecting the Bulgarian to tank again after last week's tournament win and surely the Bulgarian is getting tired by now.


Some more stats on Dimitrov show that overall this season on all surfaces he's only won 59% (29-20) of matches this year - Federer is 39-13 (75%) - and the Bulgarian has held 83.3% of the time, breaking 21.2%.  That gives him a combined sum of 104.5%.  When you consider the stats of the current world number 10, Richard Gasquet who has won 68% (41-19) of matches in 2013, holding 83.0% and breaking 26.3% (combined sum of 109.3%) you can see that Dimitrov has to up his combined numbers by around 5% just to have a shot at breaking the top 10 in the world.  


To break the top 5 he'd need to up those further by about another 7-8%.  At 22 years old I'd say that's pretty tough...


No doubt there's value on Federer here in my opinion, although I don't expect there to be breaks and many swings in this.  The Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet indicates both players have poor break deficit recovery stats (Dimitrov's is woeful at 22.22% which puts him in the bottom 20 of the ATP top 100, Federer is marginally above average at 36.96% but that's obviously well below the elite players who have over 50% break back stats) so laying the player a break up cannot be advised here.


My final preview focuses on a match in Valencia, Jarkko Nieminen against Mikhail Youzhny, with the Russian performing well on his favoured indoor hard surface. 


However Nieminen has also performed well this week and isn't without a chance at odds of around 2.80.


Youhzny has a -20% ROI in his last 50 matches against left handers and with projected holds low and close, I feel there is some value on the veteran Finn here.


Nieminen has let a break lead slip 40.79% this year and with Youzhny recovering a deficit 36.71% of the time it appears that stats would also show that break backs could occur if Nieminen leads.


Youzhny is more solid when a break in front (only loses the advantage 28.38% of the time) although Nieminen's stats are decent for recovery (38.16% break backs).


Plenty to think about there and with both players having a high percentage of matches going three sets - the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet indicates 43.18% of Nieminen's matches in 2013 have gone 3 sets whilst 43.90% of Youzhny's also have.  This is much above the 35.44% top 100 ATP average so that's also something else to consider.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


24th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/benneteau_2263356b.jpg?height=125&width=200

Julien Benneteau could keep things close against David Ferrer and break the Spaniard's serve on occasion...


Today's match previews start with a match in Valencia where I feel there could be plenty of breaks and swings.


David Ferrer and Julien Benneteau (above, pictured) both are much stronger on return than serve and with the Frenchman's excellent indoor hard record (14-6 in the past year) also very relevant, he may well keep this closer than the odds suggest.


He's only held 1.6% less than Ferrer on indoor hard, and broken 5.2% less, so 1.38 on Ferrer appears short to me in a match where projected holds are low.  He also beat Ferrer 6-4 6-1 on their last meeting, also on indoor hard, in Kuala Lumpur last year.


This in itself indicates breaks of serve are very possible and the in-play stats - indicated by the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet - show this also to be the case.


Ferrer has lost a break lead 32.56% (almost exactly average) this year, and Benneteau has got a break deficit back 48.57% of the time so laying Ferrer a break up should have a positive expectation.


This can also be applied to Benneteau who has lost a break lead 38.89%, and Ferrer has recovered a break deficit 48.39%.  


These stats show breaks and swings are very possible in this match...


This also could be said for the match between Alejandro Falla and Jarkko Nieminen with the Finn starting as favourite at about 1.50.


This match features two left handers and both have a pretty mediocre record against fellow lefties and projected holds are very low indeed, and Falla - with a low break point clutch score according to the TennisRatings Daily Spreadsheet - could struggle to hold quite badly here.


Falla has given up a break lead an over-average 42.42% of the time and with Nieminen also above average for break down recovery (38.16%) laying Falla when a break up also works well.


Falla himself recovers a deficit 39.02%, and Nieminen loses a break lead 40.79%, so the reverse can also be applied.  


Laying either player's serve on serve, or when a break up can definitely be considered here.


Finally I'm surprised to see Na Li friendless in the market, drifting to 1.56 currently, against Jelena Jankovic, with perhaps the betting public over-reacting to Jankovic's win over a lacklustre Victoria Azarenka yesterday.


Li boasts the much better hold/break stats on hard/indoor, holding 71.2% to 61.6%, and breaking 48.2% to 43.9% in the past year.  On that basis Jankovic's projected hold is very low and her serve can be opposed when realistically possible.


Li destroyed Jankovic 6-3 6-0 at the US Open in August and was 1.40 for that so I fail to see why things should be hugely different here - I'm not a big Jankovic fan and it would be just like her to follow yesterday with a disappointing display today.


Here are some more stats on the break back percentages for today's matches with reference to the article/resource I posted yesterday - you can effectively half these scores to give a guideline percentage chance (obviously other factors will also be relevant but it should give you a good idea) of a break back occurring in the respective scenario.


Pospisil v Karlovic:-


Combined Sum Pospisil a break up 35.41 Combined Sum Karlovic a break up 35.79 


Roger-Vasselin v Kamke:-


Roger-Vasselin a break up 84.19

Kamke a break up 72.41


Kubot v Brands:-


Kubot a break up 66.52

Brands a break up 59.43


Mathieu v Llodra:-


Mathieu a break up 82.21

Llodra a break up 46.19


Del Potro v Baghdatis:-


Del Potro a break up 51.19

Baghdatis a break up 71.19


Dimitrov v Dolgopolov:-


Dimitrov a break up 72.98

Dolgopolov a break up 56.84


Chardy v Isner:-


Chardy a break up 45.15

Isner a break up 48.99


Falla v Nieminen:-


Falla a break up 80.58

Nieminen a break up 79.81


Sousa v Janowicz:-


Sousa a break up 61.32

Janowicz a break up 57.58


Youzhny v Kohlschreiber:-


Youzhny a break up 58.81

Kohlschreiber a break up 59.66


Ferrer v Benneteau:-


Ferrer a break up 81.13

Benneteau a break up 87.28


Almagro v Przysiezny:- N/A (due to Przysiezny not currently being on the Ultimate In-Play spreadsheet - will be on the next update).


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


23rd October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/isner.jpg

John Isner has a very poor recent record in Europe...


As with yesterday, there's 17 matches on today's schedule (3 WTA and 14 ATP) and I'm focusing more on the ATP matches today.  The WTA Tour Championship matches all feature three justifiable heavy favourites with two of the underdogs (Sara Errani and Jelena Jankovic) having very low projected holds.


ATP action gets underway at 11am UK time (in a few minutes time) with Ernests Gulbis taking on John Isner in Valencia.


Isner, as illustrated in my articles about American's abroad, has an atrocious record in the last couple of years in Europe, generating an ROI of -33.16% from his 25 matches from 2012 onwards.  His best win was with an SP of 2.42, which is almost exactly his price today.


Gulbis, based on my hold/break stats, looks to have the value at around 1.65, and with a high projected hold and high break point clutch score, backing him when losing on serve at points illustrated by the TennisRatings Trading Handbook should have a positive expectation.


It's also worth noting that both players have a very high percentage for matches ending in three sets, according to the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet.


The top 100 average on the ATP Tour is 35.44%, however Gulbis' 2013 percentage is 43.59% and Isner's is 52.08%.  On that basis, laying the first set winner could also work well...


I also feel Dmitry Tursunov is value at around 1.70 against Roberto Bautista-Agut.


The Russian is much more accomplished on hard/indoor courts, holding much more - 82.5% to 74.2% - and breaking only marginally less (22.1% to 24.9%).


Bautista-Agut's matches tend to produce breaks and swings and with projected holds low (particularly his) it wouldn't surprise me if more happen today.


Finally the match between Fabio Fognini and Marcel Granollers could also be swingy with Fognini seemingly enjoying giving his opponents a head start before trying to recover.


Projected holds are close and very low for this and ordinarily would indicate value on Fognini at around 2.35 but Valencia is Granollers' playground and he has an incredible record here - and that cannot be ignored.


Based on my stats, laying either player's serve when the set is on serve should work pretty well.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


22nd October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/zeballos.jpg

Horacio Zeballos does not impress away from clay or in Europe...


There are 17 matches scheduled today from which to choose our selected match previews, and the three WTA Tour Championship matches in Istanbul are priced pretty fairly.  


I was hoping Petra Kvitova would be priced as an incorrect underdog against Agnieszka Radwanska with the Pole actually having a negative record on indoor hard, losing more than she has won in her career.  Conditions suit Kvitova, who has a 4-1 head to head lead over Radwanska, much more, and perhaps the 1.90 available still represents a little value.


Benjamin Becker seems over-rated at around 2.30 for his clash with Marcos Baghdatis in Basel, as I make the Cypriot good value at starting prices.  


Despite Becker being noted as a solid indoor hard player, he's only won 3 (against Ryan Harrison, Benoit Paire and Albano Olivetti) of 10 matches on the surface in the past year, holding 80.0% and breaking 16.0%.  Those starts are obviously nothing special and Baghdatis has won half of his 14 matches on the surface, holding more (87.5%), and breaking more (19.1%).  


Becker's projected hold is marginally below ATP average (Baghdatis' is high) and with a low break point clutch score too, opposing his serve using selective triggers works well for me. 


However, whilst the German veteran has let a break lead slip 45.8% of the time (well above the average of 32.1%), Baghdatis' break recovery stats are very poor only getting a break deficit back on serve 25.0% in 2013, showing that he doesn't tend to have enough motivation or fight when he falls behind.


Horacio Zeballos (above, pictured) doesn't impress me away from South American clay courts and I feel Denis Istomin is generously priced at 1.36 for their match today.


On Hard/Indoor courts in the past year, the Argentine is 3-8 with Istomin much more solid with a 25-19 record.


Furthermore, Istomin has held 83.7% to 75.0% and broken 21.3% to Zeballos' woeful 10.9% in those matches so has a huge edge in this clash.


Zeballos has played 20 matches in Europe in the past year, winning a mere 6 (4 have been on his favoured clay) and those 20 matches generate a very poor -27.0% ROI should you have backed him in all of those.


Zeballos has a low projected hold for this (Istomin's is high) and laying his serve whenever realistically possible when on serve should work well.


However, as with Baghdatis above, Istomin's breakback stats are poor (25.4% in 2013) so even though Zeballos has a poor record holding onto break leads (41.2% given up in 2013) I can't argue for laying Zeballos a break up in this.


Finally, in Valencia, the slow courts make for some interesting trading propositions as it's made projected holds pretty low.


The matches between Pablo Carreno-Busta and Jerzy JanowiczGuillermo-Garcia-Lopez against Joao Sousa and also Gilles Simon versus Alejandro Falla (laying either player a break up in that match should have a long term positive expectation - particularly if it is Falla) all have low projected holds and a fair few breaks of serves in those are very possible.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


21st October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/tipsarevic.jpg

Janko Tipsarevic must be pretty unhappy with his current form...


I've had a nightmare morning so far, I decided to go to Birmingham with Mrs. TennisRatings today and sit in a cafe whilst she was at work - 4 hours later I'm finally there!


I've missed the majority of the Dmitry Tursunov vs Albert Montanes match (I recommended Tursunov -4.5 games to TennisRatings Tips subscribers) so there are just the 7 other matches on the ATP Tour to focus on for our selected match previews.


The WTA Tour has finished for the season now apart from the end of year Championships.


Janko Tipsarevic (above, pictured) is in a terrible place in his career right now.  His body language is poor and he doesn't look like he doesn't want to be on a tennis court right now.


Today he faces Marcel Granollers, who loves conditions in Valencia and it's not a surprise to see the Spaniard favourite despite the overall hold/break stats not backing that up.


Based on the year long stats my model would make Tipsarevic about 1.85 for this but there are other factors that obviously need to be considered.


Granollers comfortably disposed of Tipsarevic several weeks ago in Shanghai and with courts in Valencia traditionally playing slowly, projected holds are low for this clash.


However it's unrealistic to expect either player to recover from a break deficit in a set more than average with both players showing very poor recovery stats, according to the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet.


Granollers is 26.3% for break deficit recovery in 2013 whilst Tipsarevic is even worse (around the bottom 10 in the top 100) at 20.4%.  


Therefore should followers wish to oppose the server, I'd recommend doing so on serve as opposed to after a break.


Another match with low projected holds is Martin Klizan versus Fabio Fognini with Klizan making his first appearance since his atrocious 'performance' against Donald Young at the US Open.


Fognini starts at around the 1.33 mark and it's hard to evaluate this match as a normal match.


I have no idea how Klizan's wrist injury is and Fognini on hard/indoor is basically guesswork as to how mentally stable he will be.  


This match has the a fair chance of being a comedy of errors with both players having more than enough potential to play horrifically.  


Part of me wants to completely leave this alone but another part of me thinks there could be some nice swings in this...


Finally, over in BaselDaniel Gimeno-Traver looks to have reasonable chances as an underdog against Lukasz Kubot.  


The Spaniard is generally under-rated on indoor hard courts and has some reasonable performances against better players than Kubot in the last year or so.  


Projected holds are close and slightly below ATP average, with Gimeno-Traver actually shading them.  


However I must point out that he has an atrocious record as a slight (2.00 to 2.99 odds range) underdog winning just 19 of his last 50 in this odds range, generating an ROI of -13%.


This match has superb chances of swings with low projected holds and also both players being very poor at holding onto break leads.


Gimeno-Traver has lost a break lead 48.0% in 2013 whilst Kubot is even worse at 51.5% (top 100 average is 32.1%).  Kubot is marginally better at getting break deficits back on serve, doing so 37.2% to 31.0%, but these stats definitely indicate that laying the player a break up should have excellent positive expectation in the long run.


It's also worth mentioning that Kubot tends to start sets well - he's broken his opponents 29.6% of the time in their opening two service games compared to 22.4% overall - but ends them terribly.  In the latter stages of sets in 2013 he's only held serve 66.7% and broken 15% - these are down from 71.0% and 22.4% across all games so it's clear to see he struggles in the business end of sets.  


Laying Kubot's serve towards the end of sets appears mandatory...


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


18th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/gulbis.jpg

Ernests Gulbis has seen his price unsurprisingly shorten since last night...


There was a lot of value last night with today's matches and TennisRatings Daily Spreadsheet and TennisRatings Tips subscribers should have got the best of the early prices.  


Ernests Gulbis (above, pictured) was one player recommended last night at 1.91 and he's currently into 1.75 which still isn't close to being my model price.  He takes on Jerzy Janowicz who may just be pleased with his efforts this week in his comeback tournament after a lay off with an elbow injury.


Despite being a 'big server', Janowicz has actually held less on hard/indoor than Gulbis in the past year, doing so 83.3% to Gulbis' 84.4%.  The Latvian has also broken more, 28.3% to 19.8% so clearly has a very strong edge in this, and also boasts the better break point stats.


According to the Ultimate In Play Spreadsheet, for a big server Janowicz also lets a break lead slip too much.  He's done so 33.9% in 2013 which is slightly above the top 100 average.  When you take into account Gulbis' deficit recovery of 42.0% then the stats indicate that laying Janowicz when a break up is a viable prospect.


The latter stages of set stats are also interesting, with Janowicz holding less - 81.2% to his overall 83.3% - but breaking more - 21.6% to his overall 17.2%.  So it would appear that a higher than average proportion of Janowicz's stats get decided in the business end of sets as opposed to an early break.


Janowicz's projected hold is slightly below average, and it should be worth opposing his serve using selective triggers.  Certainly his latter game stats indicate it should be viable later on in sets.


Gulbis' projected hold is high, and with a high clutch score then backing him when losing on serve at points indicated in the TennisRatings Trading Handbook should work well - except for the latter stages of sets due to the stats above.


Another match I have great interest in is the Fabio Fognini versus Robin Haase clash.  My preview of Fognini's match with Kubot yesterday went almost entirely to script and I'm hoping for similar today.


Both players have a very low projected hold and I'm surprised to see Fognini have favourtism at 1.70.


Let me say now that I rate neither player on hard/indoor and for one of these to get to the semi-final of an Indoor Hard event just shows how weak the competition is this week.  


I actually make Haase marginal favourite based on the stats, as he's held 9.6% more on hard/indoor in the past year, and broken 6.3% less.  He also has a significantly higher break point clutch score according to the daily spreadsheet.


Fognini lets a break lead slip 45.5% in 2013 (he did twice yesterday!) but Haase stats for recovery are weak (29.8%) so it's pretty borderline as to whether I want to recommend opposing him a break up, in all likelihood it has marginally positive expectation.


The other way round is less positive, with the Dutchman's stats surprisingly only around average for holding onto a break lead - he lets it slip 35.9% - which I thought would be higher.  Fognini also has a poor 31.6% recovery stats so laying Haase when a break up cannot be considered.


I do feel it is viable to oppose either player's serve when it's on serve though - especially Fognini's - and I'd be surprised if this match took a while to get the first break of serve.


My final preview features a women's match between Annika Beck and Katarzyna Piter with projected holds very, very low.


I feel Beck is short at 1.50 for this and actually make Piter marginal favourite.  


Beck has atrocious WTA stats on hard/indoor, holding 51.4% (her weak serve is no news to anyone that's seen her play before!) and breaking 40.2%.  These stats almost certainly would rank her well outside the top 100 for hard/indoor courts.


Piter is a player with great potential - you can see that from her stats - and her win over Wickmayer in the previous round (who I feel is a better player on the surface than Beck) gives me confidence she can take this.


She's won 4 of her 6 WTA matches including wins over Wickmayer, Kirsten Flipkens and Irina Begu - all much better than Beck on the current surface.  


She's also won 11 of 13 qualifiers on hard/indoor in the past year with an almost identical hold/break combined sum to Beck in her 10 qualifiers on the surface, again supporting the fact that Piter is the value at around 3.00.


Opposing Beck's weak serve has to be viable here.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


17th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/karlovic.jpg

Ivo Karlovic hasn't been fit recently and I feel he is over-rated after yesterday's win...


Today's 25 matches get underway at a more reasonable time of 10am UK Time today, and our selected match previews start at one of the early matches.


We saw yesterday how Eugenie Bouchard struggled with the effects of travelling and a long week previously and I feel Sam Stosur is vulnerable on a similar basis today.  I've said before that top players are statistically less affected by scheduling but this still has to be a huge negative for the Australian.


I'd prefer her opponent to be someone else than the volatile Alize Cornet but I do make the Frenchwoman some value at around 3.80 today.


Stosur has a slightly above average projected hold with Cornet's slightly below, and both players have a solid break point clutch score so there may not be that many breaks today.


That cannot be said for the match between Klara Zakopalova and Ana Ivanovic, with Ivanovic another that has come off a long week last week and may be a little tired.


I make Ivanovic's 1.22 SP fairly short but not hugely so, and in this projected holds are very low, with Zakopalova's especially so.  Opposing either player's serve when realistically possible works well for me.


In ATP action, Ernests Gulbis appears generously priced at 1.48 as he faces the limited Igor Sijsling in Stockholm but I note Sijsling has a very solid record as an underdog.


The Dutch player has a low projected hold though so opposing his serve in-play using some selective triggers should work well - although bearing in mind he only gives up a break lead 30.6% of the time in 2013 (Gulbis gets a break deficit back 42.0%) he's probably solid enough for there not to be a huge amount of positive expectation laying him when he's a break up.  


In ViennaFabio Fognini takes on Lukasz Kubot after the Pole surprisingly defeated Florian Mayer in straight sets yesterday.


Fognini is limited on hard court as his stats of 67.7% holds and 25.3% breaks illustrates and it's only his superior stats on break points that prevent me from thinking his 1.47 SP is much too short.


Stats from the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet illustrate some interesting trading avenues for this match...


Fognini has given up a break lead 45.5% which is well above average, and with Kubot recovering a break deficit 37.2% in 2013 it would appear that opposing Fognini (at an almost certain short price) would work well when he is a break up.


Indeed, the opposite approach can also be considered as Kubot has given up a break lead a huge 51.5% of the time and laying him a break up should also have positive long term value despite Fognini's mediocre stats of 31.6% break deficit recovery.


Kubot's in-set stats are pretty interesting too - he's broken his opponents 29.6% of the time in their opening two service games (much above his 22.4% overall average) so opposing Fognini's serve in his first two serve games appears highly viable.


Kubot has awful late game stats holding 66.7% (4.3% less than his overall average) and breaking 15.0% (7.4% less) so I wouldn't rely on him to break Fognini's serve in the latter stages of sets.  


These stats completely back up what I've mentioned on Kubot losing a break lead as clearly he gets broken a lot in the latter stages of sets too.


Plenty of food for thought there...


My final preview features the match between Ivo Karlovic (above, pictured) and Denis Istomin with the Uzbek a fair bit of value at 1.85 in my opinion.


He obviously holds less than Karlovic (83.5% to 90.3%) but breaks 22.0% to 8.1% so should warrant more favourtism than this.


Furthermore, in what should be critical in a tight match decided by key points, he has a much better break point clutch score.


When you consider Karlovic has been far from fully fit lately this does seem an attractive price on Istomin.


In-play, backing Istomin when losing on serve TennisRatings Trading Handbook also appeals.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


16th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/bouchard.jpg

How will Eugenie Bouchard cope in Luxembourg after playing a Final in Japan on Sunday?


The first two of today's 27 matches have just got underway and I'm going to start my selected match previews by assessing the chances of a young player that may not be in the best condition for her match today...


Eugenie Bouchard (above, pictured) is a player of great potential but one that the market is very much fully aware of, to the extent that her prices are often pretty short compared to her stats.


She did well to reach the final of Osaka on Sunday but at some point between then and now needed to take in a 15 hour flight to get to today's venue, Luxembourg.  Not only does she have that to contend with, but she also has a 7 hour time difference as well so jet lag will almost certainly be a problem.


All that is definitely going to be a hindrance for her match with Andrea Petkovic who has played some decent tennis lately and interestingly holds 2.9% more and breaks 2.6% more than Bouchard on hard or indoor hard in the past year.  


That in itself would make the 1.75 on the German about right but when you consider she's got much better break point stats, and the fatigue Bouchard surely has, the 1.75 is a great price in my opinion.


Bouchard has a low projected hold for this match and opposing her serve should work well today.


Another WTA match I'm interested in takes place in Moscow where Alisa Kleybanova takes on Carla Suarez Navarro.


The Spaniard is a fairly justified 1.40 for this but this match features low projected holds so I'd expect both ladies to struggle to hold - especially Kleybanova who has only held 50.7% since her return to tour.  Against an above average returner in CSN, that spells trouble for her.


Opposing either player's serve from the outset interests me. 


In ATP action, the match in Stockholm between the talented but inconsistent Benoit Paire and the young Spanish clay courter Pablo Carreno-Busta should feature plenty of service breaks and it wouldn't surprise me if this match descended into farce.


Both players have a very low projected hold indeed, and the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet - updated today for subscribers - has thrown up some interesting stats for this match-up.


Paire has given up a break lead 42.4% of the time (well above the ATP top 100 average of 32.1%) and Carreno-Busta has recovered a break deficit 41.7% of the time (also well above the ATP top 100 average of 35.4%).  


Carreno-Busta has given up a break lead 35.3% of the time and Paire has recovered a break deficit 43.6% of the time.


So it would appear that laying either player a break up, especially Paire, would have a positive expectation.


Carreno-Busta has held serve 67.2% of the time but only 61.7% in his opening first two service games this year so that's another angle we can look at - with him breaking 1.7% less than his overall average in his opponent's first two service games it can be considered that he is a slow starter.


Also in Sweden, I like the chances of Ivan Dodig against Fernando Verdasco.


I recommended the Croat to TennisRatings Tips subscribers at odds against for his win at the US Open in August, and I still felt the early prices last night were value, so I recommended him again today.


Now he's shortened to a best price 1.75 for this, and I make him 1.65.  


He's held 2.5% more and broken 4.5% more than the over-rated Spaniard on hard/indoor this year, and has a significantly better break point clutch score.  


Opposing Verdasco's serve should yield dividends here, with his low projected hold.


It's also worth noting that Dodig is extremely solid when a break up in sets, only relinquishing this 24.00% of the time in 2013, which would put him around the top 20 in the ATP for this stat.


There's several matches in Moscow that interest me with Teymuraz Gabashvili's rare foray onto ATP main tour territory rewarded with a decent draw against Adrian Mannarino.  


I don't especially rate the Frenchman and also consider him to be somewhat over-rated away from grass, and this match has very close, and low projected holds.


However, Mannarino is a worthy favourite based on the fact he has much better break point stats and also Gabashvili admitted to having food poisoning around his final in the Tashkent Challenger on Sunday.


Opposing either player's serve should work well here.


Finally, I'm not sure how involved I recommend readers to get involved in this based on the 'obvious' factors, but I felt Andrey Golubev was a bit of value last night at 1.70 against Horacio Zeballos, although it's gone into 1.53 now.  


However, that view is tempered by his very poor record as a slight favourite (1.50 to 1.99 odds range) where he's lost more than he's won in his last 50 matches.


Zeballos has a low projected hold for this, and doesn't play his best tennis in Europe where he has a -16% ROI for his last 50 matches.


The Argentine holds 2.94% less in his first two service games, and gives a break lead up 41.18% (9.04% above top 100 average) of the time this year too.  


Opposing Zeballos' serve in some way, shape or form 'should' work well, but I wouldn't get too involved financially.


Hopefully Betfair will work a little better than it did yesterday and we can trade with a little less stress - good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


15th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/hsieh.jpg

Su Wei Hsieh has terrible stats lately and is unsurprisingly friendless in the market...


There's 35 matches today and it's a day of action that I'm very much looking forward to.


In ATP Vienna, I mentioned yesterday about Vasek Pospisil and Lleyton Hewitt's match, with some very interesting stats and I've left yesterday's preview below so you can refer to that.


Another match in Austria I'm interested in is Michael Russell against Mirza Basic as I have some very interesting stats the American veteran based on my research.


My article on Americans In Europe showed Russell has a 2-6 record in Europe in the past two years and this represents a -36.63% ROI over that small sample.  Whilst the sample size is small, it goes along the same lines as so many other US players and whilst the hold/break stats indicate value on Russell, I cannot encourage any taking of the 1.74 available.


Both players have a low projected hold in this and it's worth mentioning that my stats in the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet - updated again tomorrow - shows Russell to be a huge choker in the latter stages of sets.


In these latter stages he's held just 61.7% of the time and this is 7.2% below his overall service hold average.  Furthermore he lets a break lead slip 55% of the time which is well above the average of 32.3%.


Laying Russell's serve when winning in the last couple of service games of a set would appear to be an avenue with huge positive expectation...


In Moscow, I don't expect Alex Bogomolov's match with Mikhail Kukushkin to have a high percentage of service holds with projected holds very low.  In Challengers, both have a very high opponent break percentage of 38.1% and 33.5% respectively in the past year and perhaps there's some value on Bogomolov at 3.10, but he's drifted like a barge since prices were released which worries me greatly.


Opposing either player's serve works well based on the stats.


Another match that should be 'interesting' to watch is the one just about to start - Filippo Volandri against Paolo Lorenzi.  Neither player enjoys the indoor hard surface but Volandri's stats make Lorenzi look world class!


Volandri is 0-8 on hard/indoor at ATP level in the past 2 years and has a very low projected hold (unsurprisingly).  


Laying him when a break up should work, although I will give a caveat to this as I feel the 'weight of money' may be an important factor to consider in this match...


Other ATP matches with low projected holds are Miroslav Mecir vs Pablo Andujar, Dudi Sela vs Aslam Karatsev and in Stockholm, Nils Langer vs Guillermo Garcia-Lopez.


In the WTA, I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw 3.00 available on the qualifier Kristina Kucova and quickly recommended that price to TennisRatings Tips subscribers.  


Yet again we've beaten the market regardless of what now happens as she's a best price of 2.43 currently - ironically that's exactly my model price as TennisRatings Daily Spreadsheet subscribers will be able to confirm...


Her opponent, Su Wei Hsieh, (above, pictured) has atrocious WTA stats on hard/indoor in the past year winning just 10 of 29 matches, holding a very low 50.5% and breaking 34.9%.  Those stats would rank her well outside the top 100 for the surface and she has a very low projected hold.


In fact that can be said for both players but there was no doubt that the early prices on Kucova were huge.  I'd be surprised if either player holds much more than they get broken in this, so opposing either's serve works well for me.


In other matches in Luxembourg, perhaps there's some value on the exciting 17 year old Donna Vekic at 4.00 against Sabine Lisicki with the German having withdrawn from Osaka last week.


Mona Barthel is another that interests me in what is essentially a 'pick em' match against Stefanie Voegele.  I priced up Barthel as the favourite - presumably the oddsmakers are now over-rating Voegele based on her getting to the semi-finals of Linz last week.


The facts are that Barthel has held 69.7% to 67.3% and broken 39.0% to 32.5% on hard/indoor in the past year and has much better break point stats too, so there's definitely some value on her in my opinion.


You could also make a strong argument for Karolina Pliskova to be shorter than 1.65 against the Spanish clay courter, Lourdes Dominguez Lino.


Lino has a very poor 4-10 record on hard/indoor in the past year at WTA level and has held serve just 45.5% in those matches.


Even a returner as limited as Pliskova should be able to put pressure on Lino's serve today - the only thing that worries me is Lino's excellent record as a slight underdog...


Finally in WTA Moscow, the early matches were the ones where I felt there was some value - particularly Rybarikova against Pervak.


The matches between Vesna Dolonc and Dominika CibulkovaElena Vesnina and Yaroslava Shvedova and especially Danka Kovinic vs Klara Zakopalova all have the potential to have a high level of service breaks in them and laying the servers almost blindly in these should have a positive expectation.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


14th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/cadantu.jpg

Alexandra Cadantu may have issues holding serve - and winning - today...


Just the 5 tournaments this week!  This heavy workload will ensure that traders should get some great opportunities...


Based on last year's data, there could be more than the expected number of service breaks on the cards with the WTA events in particular last year having lower than average surface holds.


It's also worth noting the phenomenon of Vienna which I referred to in this Article last week.  In the article, I mentioned that Vienna has the lowest average on tour of matches ending in 2 straight sets - 51.85% in the last 3 years.  This is around 11% below the ATP average and in all 3 years the percentage was 56% or lower.  


The resource with the data for each tournament in is available at this link and shows there have been 40.74% of 3 set matches and 7.41% of matches ended in retirements.  


It's clear that laying the first set winner historically would have produced excellent yields and could well be a viable strategy again this year, particularly if you couple that with players that have a high propensity to play 3 set matches.  


Looking at the draw, and the stats from the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet, which has set win percentages and 2 set/3 set percentages for each player in the top 100, we can see that the average for matches ending in 3 sets for the ATP top 100 is 35.69%.


The following players, due to play at Vienna, have a 40% or higher percentage for their matches ending in 3 sets in 2013.


Pospisil (66.7%)

Hewitt (58.6%)

Kubot (57.1%)

Haase (51.2%)

Russell (43.8%)

Andujar (41.7%)

Tsonga (40.0%)


With the two highest players, Vasek Pospisil and Lleyton Hewitt, facing each other in the first round tomorrow, surely there has to be a very high historical expectation for this match to end in three sets.  Pospisil is the marginal 1.85 favourite at the time of writing and you can get 2.25 on there being 3 sets in this.  However dutching the 2-1's obtains odds of 2.42, and surely this route is one with positive expectation.  


Traders should be pretty interested in laying the first set winner in this, especially if it was Pospisil - Hewitt has won just 41.4% of first sets this year but shows a market improvement in the latter stages of matches with a 65.5% and 64.7% winrate in the second and third sets respectively.


In our selected match previews for today, there are only two matches in Vienna and they seem pretty well priced.  


Martin Fischer does not have a strong serve and has been broken in 20 of his 60 service games at ATP level in 2012 & 2013.  He also has the dubious honour from Gstaad last year of Janko Tipsarevic seemingly giving up tanking to him because he was so bad!  Today he faces Radek Stepanek and I think this should be pretty routine for the Czech veteran.  Should Stepanek fall behind, Fischer has a very low projected hold and his can be opposed when realistically possible.


In Moscow, I like the price on Ricardas Berankis against Horacio Zeballos in normal circumstances and feel that without the concerns over the Lithuanian's wrist (he retired in St. Petersburg against Lukas Rosol and has lost in the first round of two Challengers) he'd be about half the 1.75 currently on offer.  


Zeballos has a low projected hold, a  poor record away from South America and is 2-7 on hard/indoor in the past year, so should Berankis be fully fit, he should take this.  


Sadly this is the only match not streamed at ATP Moscow today so assessing Berankis' fitness will be pretty difficult!  What might be a viable idea is to lay Zeballos' serve for the opening couple of service games and see if we can get some positive movement early on.


Most of the matches that interest me come in the WTA today with Alexandra Cadantu (above, pictured) having an incredibly low projected hold against her fellow Romanian, Monica Niculescu in Luxembourg.  I recommended Niculescu at 1.44 to TennisRatings Tips subscribers yesterday evening with my model indicating she should be 1.35.  Now she's dropped to a more realistic 1.33, so we beat the market.


In fact, in this, both players should be stronger on return than on serve but I want to oppose Cadantu - who should struggle to hold more than she gets broken - whenever I realistically can in this.  Cadantu has only held 50.7% in her 15 WTA matches on hard/indoor in the past year and against an opponent who has broken more than average, she should have great issues holding serve today.


Annika Beck was a very marginal favourite last night at around 1.90 against Tsvetana Pironkova but has now been backed in to 1.67.  I make that pretty short with both players not having a very positive surface record.  


As with most matches involving Beck, both players have a very low projected hold and both their serves can be opposed.  I particularly like this line with Beck who has held a woeful 48.9% on hard/indoor in the past year, especially considering I now make her no value for this.


Over at WTA Moscow, all three of Svitolina v Cornet, Kuznetsova v Tsurenko and Lepchenko v Kleybanova should feature breaks of serve with all six players having below average projected holds.  


Kuznetsova is an interesting prospect with her starting at a short 1.20 (she often seems pretty over-rated by the market away from clay) and with Tsurenko breaking her opponents 46.4% on hard/indoor in the past year then laying Kuznetsova's serve to start with seems to be pretty viable.


It's hard to gauge Kleybanova's level with her playing just 5 WTA matches in the past year (all on hard/indoor) but in those she has consistently struggled to hold serve, doing so a mere 47.4% of the time.  Even a limited returner like the out of form Lepchenko who has broken just 26.1% on the surface in the past year should find chances to break here.  


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


12th October Match Previews


Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/voegele.jpg

Stefanie Voegele has now played 3 long 3 set matches...


It's semi-finals day in this week's tournaments and for our selected match previews we are going to look at the matches in Shanghai and Linz.


The first semi-final in China starts at 9:30am UK time with Novak Djokovic taking on Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and it's worth mentioning that Djokovic has won all eight meetings between these two since 2011.


Also, as I mentioned yesterday the Serb has a superb record in the latter stages of seasons and it would be a surprise to me if he didn't get through this.


Djokovic's SP of 1.20 is pretty justified, and he has a high projected hold (but a low break point clutch score), whereas Tsonga's stats are the other way around - a fairly low projected hold with a high break point clutch score.  


It's hard to recommend any laying or backing of either server on that basis, and it's also interesting that Tsonga has a magnificent record of holding onto break leads in 2013 - he gives that lead away just 10.2% which is the best on the ATP Tour - so backing Djokovic when a break down definitely does not appeal either.


Djokovic also did well for followers yesterday with a comeback victory - laying Monfils after winning the first set was recommended - but Tsonga wins 70% of second sets himself in 2013 (higher than his 63.9% overall average) so this route cannot be recommended today.


Overall this is probably a match best watched.


The second semi-final between Rafael Nadal and Juan Martin Del Potro was a tough one to analyse when I did so last night with the 1.37 on offer on the world number one seeming to be pretty generous.


Based on the hold/break stats this year I make Nadal shorter at 1.18 but I have to take into account Del Potro's superb record as a heavy underdog - in his last 10 matches priced 3.00 to 5.99 he's beaten Djokovic twice and also Roger Federer twice as well, and overall in his career when priced in this odds range he has a superb ROI of 38%.  He's also only lost three of the last 10 in this odds range in straight sets.


Del Potro has a slightly below average projected hold but not enough to justify opposing his serve at any stage, whilst Nadal has a very high projected hold and also a high break point clutch score - so backing him when losing on serve at points specified in the TennisRatings Trading Handbook should be justified.


Del Potro has let a break lead slip 28.2% in 2013 and with Nadal recovering a break deficit 68.8% of the time laying Del Potro when a break up should also have positive expectation.


In the WTA action in Austria, the first semi-final between Carla Suarez Navarro and Angelique Kerber starts at 1pm UK time and it's the German top seed that is the justified 1.42 favourite.


I'm not ashamed to admit I've had very mixed success in matches with Suarez Navarro in this year, having made a lot by generally supporting her in the clay season but having an up and down record (probably more down than up) doing so on hard/indoor in the latter stages of the year.  


The fact is that with 58.6% holds and 42.1% breaks on hard/indoor she doesn't have the best stats (actually after the grass season they were a fair bit worse than that) but she seems to get the job done especially when priced as favourite.


She's not the favourite here and in a match where I feel there could be breaks and swings I like the chances of Kerber to progress to the final.


Both projected holds are low for an indoor hard event but it's the Spaniard with the much lower - based on the stats she should be about as likely to hold as get broken.  I want to oppose her serve when realistically possible here.


In the second semi-final, I make Ana Ivanovic value even at 1.25 against Stefanie Voegele (above, pictured) with the Swiss world number 58 now having played 3 long 3 set matches - according to my research backing players in this scenario has a very poor return on investment so I'd be shocked if Voegele got past her much more experienced and accomplished opponent today.


Voegele has a low projected hold with a low break point clutch score, whilst Ivanovic has the opposite, so opposing Voegele's serve when realistically possible and backing Ivanovic when losing on serve (as with Nadal) works well for me.


If Ivanovic had any difficulty getting to her first WTA Final this year it would be a surprise to me.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


11th October Match Previews

Stan Wawrinka hasn't had much to smile about against Rafael Nadal in his career...

Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/wawrinka.jpg


As usual this week our previews cover the Shanghai and Linz events with Osaka almost finishing after another very early start.


In China, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has just taken out Florian Mayer in facile fashion, and just about to start is Juan Martin Del Potro against Nicolas Almagro.  


It's tough to recommend a trading avenue for this - there's possibly a little value on Almagro at 3.30 but it's not exceptional.  Projected holds are high but break point clutch scores are pretty average.  


One thing worth noting is that Almagro is a bad choker in the latter stages in sets.  According to the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet the Spaniard really struggles holding serve just 80.0% of the time in these latter stages, compared to 84.8% overall.  This could well be a viable lay entry point should he be leading by a break going towards the end of the set.


Novak Djokovic takes on Gael Monfils next on court after the Frenchman despatched of the declining Roger Federer yesterday.  


I feel that Monfils may well have his work cut out against the Serb who has a superb record in the latter stages of the season, winning a superb 22 out of 23 matches in 2012 and 2013 from September onwards in each year.  This generates a very solid ROI of 20.39% overall and clearly shows he doesn't ease off towards the end of the year.


Laying Monfils if he takes the first set is a solid strategy - this year Djokovic has won 76.1% of sets but 86.2% of second sets so he obviously ups his level in the second set.  


In the final match in China, Rafael Nadal takes a 10-0 head to head lead into battle with Stan Wawrinka (above, pictured), and the Swiss player hasn't even taken a set from Nadal in those 10 matches.


Even with Nadal perhaps looking a little weary last week I feel a Wawrinka win is highly unlikely and the 1.22 on Nadal seems pretty generous.  


The Spaniard has a very high projected hold and break point clutch score, according to the TennisRatings Daily Spreadsheet and I'm pretty sure that backing him on serve when losing in-game at certain points recommended in the TennisRatings Trading Handbook would be a very reasonable option.


Furthermore, it's worth mentioning that Nadal has BY FAR the best record on tour for recovering a break deficit - currently he recovers that 68.8% of the time this year which eclipses the second best - Andy Murray - significantly with the Scotsman at 54.6%.  


Even with Wawrinka relatively solid for defending break leads - he's let a lead slip just 24.7% - this line should also have some positive expectation.


Over in Austria, I feel Kirsten Flipkens is some value as a slight underdog at 2.15 against Carla Suarez Navarro with the Spaniard - in my opinion - a false favourite.


Flipkens has held 68.8% to CSN's 57.8% on hard court in the past year, with CSN breaking more - 42.0% to 35.6% - but these stats would make Flipkens the slight favourite.  


As usual in Flipkens' matches we have to bear in mind her extraordinary comeback record which stands at 20-30 (40%) from a set down which is up there with the best in the WTA.  With Suarez Navarro probably going to be around the 1.30 mark after a first set, laying her should be a pretty decent opportunity.


Finally I quite like the price of Ana Ivanovic at around 1.55 against Dominika Cibulkova with the Slovak being fairly over-rated on hard courts this season.  


I made Ivanovic 1.45 - her projected hold is very slightly over average with Cibulkova's much lower.  Should Cibulkova lead then opposing her serve - especially if she isn't holding easily - becomes very viable.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


10th October Match Previews

Can Florian Mayer further David Ferrer's woes?

Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/mayer.jpg



Osaka's three matches have already taken place so as with previous days this week we are going to take a look at Shanghai and Linz for our selected match previews.


Action in Austria commences at 1pm UK time, whilst in the early matches in China, Juan Martin Del Potro received a walkover following Tommy Haas' withdrawal, and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga recovered from a statistically supported break deficit to beat Kei Nishikori in straight sets.


Next up in Shanghai is David Ferrer's match with Florian Mayer (above, pictured).  The oddsmakers have done an excellent job in Shanghai today with very little value on the card in my opinion, but Mayer is perhaps the best of a bad bunch at around 4.15.


Ferrer's form has been very mediocre for a player of his level whilst Mayer has yet to drop a set this week and impressed in the last round against Benoit Paire.


Projected holds are fairly low in this match with Mayer's a fair bit below average, but it's worth noting the difference isn't big enough to support the gap in the odds.  Furthermore, Mayer's break point clutch score is significantly better than Ferrer's and this is a match which could be closer than the odds suggest.


However with Ferrer breaking back 50% when a break down (one of the best in the ATP and well above the 32.6% average) any Mayer backers may wish to hedge for profit should the German lead at any point.


The only other players with low projected holds in Shanghai are the extreme underdogs - Fabio Fognini (vs Novak Djokovic) and Carlos Berlocq (vs Rafael Nadal).


The clash between Milos Raonic and Stan Wawrinka looks interesting with it being a mark of how much Raonic has improved lately that he's slight favourite for this. 


Unsurprisingly, both players have a very high projected hold and the pre-match prices seem justified.  


Both players also have a high break point clutch score making this the perfect match to back the server when losing at points specified in the TennisRatings Trading Handbook.  


Over in Austria, there are the remaining four second round matches on the schedule and they aren't exclusively high quality affairs.


The match that the neutral is probably looking forward to the most is Sloane Stephens against Andrea Petkovic but sadly the drift on Stephens last night was correct and the value eroded on Petkovic, and she starts as slight favourite here at around 1.80 - exactly what my model predicted.


Both Katarzyna Piter and Maryna Zanevska have low projected holds against Dominika Cibulkova and Patricia Mayr-Achtleitner but have small sample sizes so the data may not be incredibly reliable.


Actually the qualifying stats of Piter in the last year are not bad at all so she may be a player worth keeping an eye on in the future.


From a pre-match betting perspective, Karin Knapp represents value against Stefanie Voegele at 2.10 in my eyes - the projected hold model was exactly the same for both players but Knapp has a much better break point record, as well as a superb record as slight underdog, perhaps indicating she's often under-rated by the layers.


Projected holds are a little above average though - probably not enough from a trading perspective to warrant backing Knapp when losing on serve though.  


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!



9th October Match Previews

Melanie Klaffner could struggle to hold serve today...

Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/klaffner.jpg


With Osaka's 4 matches nearing their conclusion, again our efforts are focused on Shanghai and Linz today.


Projected holds are pretty high in China overall and there's not an avalanche of opportunities based on my stats there.


I like the price of Florian Mayer (2.20) against the over-rated Benoit Paire, in a match with two of the lower projected holds (although they're barely below the ATP average) and it makes sense to oppose Jurgen Melzer's serve as his projected hold is low against Kei Nishikori, although it's worth noting that the Austrian veteran gave Nishikori plenty of problems last week.


In Austria, there's more on the horizon for trading opportunities in my opinion.


Projected holds are pretty low for an indoor hard event and in the first match, it will be interesting to see how the very promising Elina Svitolina copes with Carla Suarez Navarro.  


The Ukrainian has the better hard court stats although it's worth pointing out many of those were in lower calibre events, but I do feel that odds of 3.20 on her is a bit of an insult - although Suarez Navarro has a very solid record as favourite.


Projected holds are low with the Spaniard's particularly so, therefore opposing Suarez Navarro's serve seems viable.  However it's worth mentioning the problems Svitolina has had in recent matches converting break points and several close defeats have ensued due to her inability to win those key points - even in a second set bagel by Ana Ivanovic recently she had 6 break points - so if you do choose to oppose the Suarez Navarro serve it may be worth taking profit at a score like 15-40.


There's an odd price on Kirsten Flipkens against Camila Giorgi with the higher ranked Belgian receiving no market love at 2.15.  I have my doubts over her fitness but there's no doubt Giorgi is getting increasingly over-rated by the market despite her poor hard/indoor court stats which show 61.5% holds and 31.2% breaks in the past year - on that basis she's nothing special whatsoever.


As usual with Flipkens it's worth bearing in mind her epic comeback record (has won 40% of her last 50 matches when she's lost the 1st set including a win in this manner yesterday against Donna Vekic) and a lay of Giorgi if she does take the first set but Flipkens looks reasonably fit should be a low-risk, high-reward opportunity.


I must admit in the third match I want to preview in Linz that if Melanie Klaffner (above, pictured) walked past me in the street I wouldn't even know who she was but that's not particularly important.  Today the young Austrian takes on Alexandra Cadantu who is much more comfortable on clay but doesn't have a that horrific hard court record.  


Klaffner is 1-6 in WTA Main Draw matches and also has never won a match on indoor hard or hard court in either a Main Draw or Qualifying match.  She's 0-5 in those and has held just 40.8% and broken just 21.3% which are truly awful stats.


I'm surprised to see that Cadantu is available at 1.67 and not getting a lot of support in the market but for me that's a decent price.  


Projected holds are very low in this match and should there be reasonable liquidity, Klaffner's serve in particular should be targeted.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


8th October Match Previews

Benoit Paire's match with Gilles Simon at Indian Wells in March featured 14 breaks & 31 break points in 31 games...

Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/Paire.jpg


Just the 37 matches were scheduled today with almost the entire first round of Shanghai on the card - however with inclement weather in China it's unlikely all of those will be played.


The matches in Osaka have almost been completed so our attention will focus on Shanghai, and also the WTA Indoor Hard event in Linz.


Gilles Simon's match with Benoit Paire (above, pictured), in Indian Wells in March featured 14 breaks in 31 games and projected holds are very low for this as well - so more of the same could be on the cards.


With Paire having a back problem Simon is solid favourite at around 1.47 and I like the line of laying Paire should he lead by a break in this - the latest update of the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet shows that in 2013, Paire has let a break lead slip 43.0% of the time (top 100 average is 32.3%) and Simon has recovered a break deficit 44.7% - this too is above the top 100 average of 35.6%.


I can't see this match going on serve for long so whilst it's on serve, laying the server could also be an option.


Kei Nishikori takes on Grigor Dimitrov later with the Japanese player 1.56 favourite.  


Nishikori hasn't impressed me greatly in the past few months and I feel he hasn't kicked on as well as I expected in the second half of this season.  However, Dimitrov has impressed me even less and I don't have a lot of time for the Bulgarian's game currently - he has an awful 15.9% service breaks on hard court in the past year.  To put that into context that's less than 'big server' Milos Raonic and the Canadian also holds serve over 10% more on average too...


Dimitrov has a low projected hold for this and with my model indicating some slight value on Nishikori I like the line of opposing Dimitrov's sever when possible.  


Furthermore Dimitrov has been broken back when leading 36.5% in 2013 whilst Nishikori recovers a break deficit 42.2% so a similar approach (although it's definitely not as +EV) can be taken to the Paire leading by a break scenario.


Dimitrov has only recovered a break deficit 22.7% of the time in 2013 so the reverse strategy definitely cannot be considered - this puts him in the bottom 20 in the ATP top 100 for this criteria...


Fernando Verdasco is usually over-rated by the market and I feel that he could be slightly again against the local player, Ze Zhang.  Zhang, many may be aware, partnered Roger Federer to a doubles victory yesterday and by all accounts played very well, and the confidence this should generate may see him cause Verdasco more difficulties than the 1.19 starting price suggests.


Verdasco's projected hold is marginally above average with Zhang's about 6% below average, so actually the difference between the two isn't reflected in the price - I make him more like 1.29 for this.


Laying Verdasco pre-match with a view to greening out later can be considered.


Over in Linz, I'm very much looking forward to several matches for trading.


Annika Beck's match with Dominika Cibulkova plus Andrea Petkovic's clash with Yvonne Meusburger should both be ones which feature plenty of breaks of serve with projected holds very low.  


Certainly Beck's projected hold is very low and I feel she should struggle to hold more often than she gets broken - so should she lead by a break in this we may be able to get some decent opportunities to oppose her.


A match with two qualifiers in also caught my eye with Stan James making a huge mistake last night pricing Aleksandra Krunic at 1.80 to beat Maryna Zanevska


There's not a lot of main draw data on either player but based on their qualifying stats for the past 12 months Krunic should have been priced at around 1.40 - there's a fair ability differential on show here.


I see she's been cut now but TennisRatings Tips subscribers should have managed to get the bigger price and no matter what happens now, we beat the market.


It seems that Stan James have made quite a few mistakes in the Asian Swing and left big prices up for a lot longer than they should have - an unrestricted account with them is absolute gold dust...


For trading purposes, Zanevska - who has only held serve 59.7% in 6 hard court qualifying matches in the past year - should struggle to hold serve against an opponent who's broken 51.2% in her qualifiers, so she has a low projected hold and that should be worth opposing.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


7th October Match Previews

Tatsuma Ito should be outclassed in straight sets by Gael Monfils...

Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/ito.jpg


There's 18 matches on the agenda today which is a few more than a usual Monday - as the Asian Swing comes towards an end.


With there also being a tournament in Linz, Austria, there's live tennis available for the vast majority of the day each day this week so traders have plenty of opportunities to get involved.


The courts should play fairly quickly this week - last year Osaka WTA had 66.2% holds which is very high for the WTA (average hard court hold is 62.7%) whilst in Linz average holds were 65.9% - it's worth mentioning here that this is on an indoor hard surface which is rare for the WTA.  In the last year the average holds for a WTA event on indoor hard is 65.3%, so a fair bit up from the outdoor hard average.


Shanghai also should play a little fast.  Last year there were 80.0% holds which is above the current 78.0% ATP average.


Due to these factors projected holds are quite high today and I feel that matches where we can look to oppose either server when possible will be few and far between this week.  


The only players with low projected holds in the ATP are the heavy underdogs - the world ranked 600 Mao-Xing Gong (looking at his results it would be fair to say he's not even at Challenger level) against Philipp KohlschreiberAlbert Montanes (who has a long-term 8-1 losing head to head record) against his countryman Tommy Robredo, the American veteran journeyman Michael Russell for his match with Alexandr Dolgopolov and finally Tatsuma Ito (above, pictured) as he faces Gael Monfils.


I'm going to look at the match between Monfils and Ito to commence our selection of match previews.  


My model priced Monfils up as a heavy 1.10 favourite, so the 1.23 on him represents value.  There's a slight injury doubt over him but he pushed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga reasonably well last week.


Monfils has played 12 matches in 2013 when priced between 1.20 and 1.49 and interestingly all 12 have been finished in straight sets (8 wins and 4 defeats).  9 have covered the under 21 games line (available at a touch under evens).  On that basis backing him if he loses the first set does not appear to be a viable proposition.


It's also worth mentioning that Monfils only gets a break deficit back on serve 32.7% of the time (below the top 100 average of 35.6%) and for a player of his calibre this is very poor.  On the evidence of the previous paragraph, and this, it's clear that Monfils has a very negative mindset when losing in sets, even against poor opponents.


On hard courts in the past year, Monfils has held 82.0% with Ito a way back at a woeful 68.3%.  Monfils has broken 25.0% to 15.6% so there's a clear quality differential on display here - if Monfils wants this, he will take it.  


Michael Russell was another player with a low projected hold and you can reasonably approach his match with Alexandr Dolgopolov in a different way.


The 35 year old world number 98 is not the most solid these days and it's worth noting he has an awful service hold late in sets according to the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet at just 61.7% (well below his already poor 68.9% average) and he's also given up a break lead 55.0% of the time too, which puts him near the worst in the ATP.  


With Dolgopolov recovering a break deficit a solid 39.2% of the time we can definitely lay Russell when a break up with positive expectation.  


It's also worth mentioning that Russell has a much better first set record than any other sets (he's won 56.3% of first sets but just 43.8% overall) so we may see him start like a train before fading.  Dolgopolov's set win percentages are pretty level from set to set.


Jeremy Chardy's match with Bernard Tomic is another worth looking at with both players having a high projected hold and a high break point 'clutch' score so it would appear that the route to go down here is to back either player when losing on serve at points specified in the TennisRatings Trading Handbook.  


Tomic starts as favourite at around 1.62 which appears pretty reasonable.  I'll also point out that Chardy has a very strong 2nd set record, winning 56.0% of those in 2013.  When you consider he's only won 36.0% of 1st sets, and 22.2% of deciding 3rd sets this year, it's a huge stat.  It would appear that he wins matches 2-0 a high percentage of the time if he takes the first set, and also takes the second when a set down more than average too.  That's definitely worth considering.


In women's action, the Linz draw got rescheduled late after the wild card Lisa Marie Moser made a late withdrawal to hand Angelique Kerber a wild card number one seed spot.  


Unlike the vast majority of my Twitter timeline, I couldn't care less about the politics - I'm just glad that a player whom I have plenty of stats on is participating instead of one that I don't...


Moser was due to face Stefanie Voegele who now takes on Klara Zakopalova, who has lost her last 5 matches and the market has zero confidence in.  


My projected hold model indicates extreme value on Zakopalova due to this, with her being a very marginal favourite for this - however in the past year she's broken 19.0% more than Voegele on hard courts and broken just 6.5% less.  So this price looks a large over-reaction on her form - Voegele is only 4-10 for the past year on hard courts herself and is also coming off a run of 4 defeats on the spin and in fact has lost her last 6 main draw matches.


Voegele has a low projected hold for this so looking to oppose her serve when realistically possible appears the way to go here.


In my final preview, in Osaka, that also looks the line to take for Silvia Soler-Espinosa versus Misaki Doi, whom dismantled the Spaniard (as recommended to TennisRatings Tips subscribers in Beijing last week.  


In that, Doi was 1.88 favourite which was a ridiculous price but now she's more realistically priced at 1.42. 


Soler-Espinosa has a terrible 2-9 record on hard courts in the past year with Doi much more solid at 13-12 and in those matches Soler-Espinosa has held serve just 50.9% of the time.  On that basis she has a very low projected hold and I'd expect her service woes to continue today.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


6th October Match Previews

Rafael Nadal is 27-0 on hard court this season...

Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/nadal.jpg


There are three finals today and also 4 matches in the first round at Shanghai to consider.


The first final between Del Potro and Raonic has just finished the first set - Del Potro nicking it on a tiebreak - so I will concentrate my efforts on the other two.


In BeijingJelena Jankovic has the unfortunate task of being next in line to attempt to derail the juggernaut that is Serena Williams!  The odds of 1.12 on the American world number one are fair and suggest she is unlikely to.


Jankovic's projected hold is very low in this and if somehow she leads then it could be worth opposing that.  Whilst the Serb has had previous success against Williams, that was when she was at her peak and perhaps Williams wasn't as dominant.  When Jankovic last won, on clay in 2010, she was actually favourite which indicates that the head to head record is absolutely irrelevant.


In the men's final in China, it's the final most of the neutrals were hoping for as current world number one Novak Djokovic takes on next week's number one Rafael Nadal (above, pictured).


I expected to see Djokovic as favourite here given my market experience but don't agree with that - I make this an absolutely 'pick 'em' match and actually there's a reasonable argument to be had for Nadal to be favourite.


He carries an unbeaten 27-0 hard court record in 2013 into this whilst Djokovic has had 5 defeats in his 48 matches in the past 12 months.  


The hold/break stats are very tight and give Djokovic a very marginal edge but there's so little in it - but Nadal has much better break point stats which definitely at least counter that.


The Spaniard has a 22-15 head to head lead including their last three meetings although Djokovic leads 4-1 in their hard court meetings since 2011.


Overall, projected holds are a little below ATP average and in these 'elite v elite' matches I find there are often more breaks than expected.


So let's see if the stats back up my thoughts - I'm going to assess their recent previous meetings:-


2013, US Open final - 34 service games, 10 breaks.


2013, Montreal semi-final - 31 service games, 4 breaks.


2013, French Open semi-final - 54 service games, 13 breaks.


2013, Monte Carlo final - 20 service games, 8 breaks.


2012, French Open final - 39 service games, 16 breaks.


2012, Rome final - 21 service games, 5 breaks.


2012, Monte Carlo final - 16 service games, 6 breaks.


2012, Australian Open final - 54 service games, 11 breaks (Djokovic had 20 break points alone though!).


This actually calculates to 74.35% service holds (about 4% below ATP average) which is almost identical to my projected hold model of Djokovic 74.6%, Nadal 73.6% which completely solidifies my confidence in my model.


Certainly, should there be several early breaks, a fair few more could follow...


There wasn't much that interested me in Shanghai with there being 4 fairly short priced favourites (completely justified).  The match with the lowest projected holds was the one just commenced between Julien Benneteau and Lukas Rosol who I'm still not convinced is close to fitness.  


Di Wu and Pablo Andujar have very low projected holds against Florian Mayer and Mikhail Youzhny respectively and could be worth opposing if they get in front - certainly with Wu's match with Mayer I can see this having potential to be fairly similar to Mayer's match with Benjamin Balleret previously this season where Mayer had a very complacent start before eventually coming through.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


5th October Match Previews

Agnieszka Radwanska has taken just 2.46 games per set from Serena Williams...

Description: https://sites.google.com/site/lovetennisgamesetmatch/Live-betting-tips/radwanska.jpg



There's three of the six matches today left in the semi-finals in Beijing and Tokyo so I'm going to have a look at those to see where the trading value lies.


The one men's match left is Novak Djokovic - who will no longer be world number one after Rafa Nadal's retirement win over Tomas Berdych earlier - against Richard Gasquet.  


The Serb has had few problems with Gasquet in previous meetings, winning 9 of 10 in his career.  Gasquet has only taken a set in 3 of those, and those three were all in 2006/2007.   Based on those stats it's hard to think he will get very far today.


My projected holds also indicate that, with Djokovic much the stronger in that regard.  Gasquet's is 66.5% according to the TennisRatings Daily Spreadsheet - the lowest of all 8 ATP players that participate today.  


Therefore opposing Gasquet's serve if possible (basically when he's leading) looks very viable.


Further adding to that, is the stats from the Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet where Gasquet gives a break lead up in a set 26.6% of the time and Djokovic gets a break deficit back 53.5%.  Those stats - indicating Gasquet is slightly better at protecting leads than average but Djokovic is much better than average at recovering deficits - make the line of laying Gasquet when a break up also look attractive.


Laying Gasquet if he takes the first set also seems possible.  He's won 65.8% of first sets but only 60.5% of second sets this year, whilst Djokovic has won 75.9% of first sets but a superb 86.2% of second sets.  Just be careful and make sure that if you generate profit this way then close your position by the start of the third set - Djokovic has only taken 44.4% of deciders this year.


In the women's matches, Agnieszka Radwanska (above, pictured) takes on world number one Serena Williams and the Polish world number four looks to have her work cut out, taking just one set from the American in their six meetings.


Indeed, Radwanska has taken just 32 games from Williams in those meetings across 13 sets - meaning she's won a woeful 2.46 games per set against Williams in her career.


It's hard to see anything else than a Serena Williams win here, but should the unlikely happen - and Williams' matches have been close this week - and Radwanska leads, I feel opposing her is a sound strategy - her projected hold of 55.7% lends itself well to laying her serve with it being 7% below the WTA mean.


Finally I'm looking at Petra Kvitova against Jelena Jankovic where Kvitova - playing better tennis than recent weeks - starts as favourite at around 1.52.  


I mentioned the other day that Kvitova's got an incredible record now where over half her matches this year have gone to three sets and she's now taken the WTA record for deciding set wins in a season.


On that basis it's hard to think that this won't go the distance and projected holds are close, and slightly below the WTA average.  There's only 1.9% between them so that gives slight value on Jankovic, although that's tempered by her mediocre record against left-handers (-8.5% ROI in her last 50 matches) and the fact that Kvitova has an excellent break point clutch score so should be much better at the key points.  


I'm more tempted to oppose Jankovic's serve than Kvitova's in this. 


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


4th October Match Previews:-

Tomas Berdych could be worth backing when losing on serve...

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There's still 7 matches left today and here's a selection of my thoughts regarding them...


Tomas Berdych (above, pictured) is a solid 1.67 favourite against the big-serving American, John Isner.  I made him shorter than this based on my projected hold model but am a little worried about Isner's superb record as underdog and against top 10 opponents - his results suggest he steps it up against better quality opposition.  He also has a better record in Asia than his horrific record in Europe (as witnessed by my new Article posted yesterday).


As you might expect for a match between these two, projected holds are very high and it's actually Berdych - due to Isner's poor 11.4% opponent break on hard courts - with the higher.  Both players also have a high break point 'clutch score' so backing the server (particularly Berdych based on my stats) when losing on serve at specified points (illustrated in the Tennis Trading Handbook) seems a good strategy here.


In the next match after that in Beijing, I'm surprised to see David Ferrer as big as 2.25 or so against Richard Gasquet - even considering the fact that he's not been at his best recently.


The Spaniard boasts a dominant 8-2 head to head lead (3-1 since 2012) and actually, despite the fact that he's 'struggled' this week, his combined hold/break stats are almost identical to the Frenchman's in China.  


As I mentioned on yesterday's previews, Ferrer is excellent when losing in sets but Gasquet only lets a break lead slip 26.6% (about 6% below average) so this approach still has an edge - Ferrer broke Matosevic back in the first set yesterday - but it's not nearly as big today.


With Ferrer giving up a break lead 33.3% of the time and Gasquet getting a break deficit back 46.6% the reverse approach laying Ferrer a break up is also possible.


Projected holds are both low in this and breaks are definitely a possibility.  With 40.0% of Ferrer's matches going to 3 sets this year, and 36.8% of Gasquet's doing the same (ATP average is 35.7%) there's also a slightly larger chance of this going 3 sets - both players are pretty consistent with their individual set win percentages.  


Low priced lays may well be rewarded in this.


In the women's match I'm looking at, Agnieszka Radwanska takes on Angelique Kerber in a repeat of last week's match in Tokyo where I recommended the German to TennisRatings Tips subscribers.  That was well rewarded and I see the prices have changed significiantly since then - that day Kerber was available at around 3.00 but she's much closer to evens today.


Perhaps punters have cottoned on to the fact that Radwanska is terrible against left-handers (she has a 24-18 career record which is well below her overall win percentage, with a shocking -22% ROI in those matches).  However I feel it's more likely that it's just because she lost a head to head match last week...


I make today's prices much more realistic with Kerber around 2.30 and it's a tough one to call regarding a trading method.


Kerber has a low projected hold but a high break point clutch score, so those opposing her serve may want to get out of the trade with profit at a score like 15-40 instead of waiting for the break, whilst Radwanska's projected hold is almost exactly the WTA average, but also has a high break point clutch score.


The other two matches feature heavy favourites in Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams which are justified - however it's worth noting the Serb potentially may not be 100% with a cold.  


Their opponents Sam Querrey and Caroline Wozniacki have low projected holds and should they lead, opposing their serve becomes more viable.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


3rd October Match Previews:-

David Ferrer has a superb record when a break down in sets.

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About half of today's 14 matches have been completed so I thought I'd take a look at some of the remaining matches from a trading perspective.


There's a severe dearth of value today on the whole, but I do feel the oddsmakers may have over-reacted a little on David Ferrer's price against Marinko Matosevic in Beijing.


My projected hold model indicated Ferrer should be priced at 1.21 yet he's available at 1.36 for this.  However that comes with a caveat as I've not been at all impressed with Ferrer's recent form - a shock defeat to Joao Sousa and a final set tie-break against Vasek Pospisil - as well as his general results in the last couple of months.  


In the past Ferrer would have been priced 1.1x against the Australian and I can't help thinking 1.36 is fairly large.  It must be said, however, that Matosevic has an excellent record as an underdog and this has to be considered.  


Matosevic has a very low projected hold for this so I like the line of opposing him/his serve here if/when a break up.


He's given a break lead up 43.2% in 2013 (well above the 32.3% average) and with Ferrer getting a break deficit back on serve exactly 50.0% in 2013 laying Matosevic when a break up seems a very solid play.


There aren't many trading angles I like in the other remaining ATP matches - perhaps Richard Gasquet is a little short against Bernard Tomic but the Australian doesn't have a solid record as a long-shot.


Just starting in WTA Beijing is the clash between Roberta Vinci and Angelique Kerber with the prices about right pre-match - Kerber is favourite at around 1.50.  

Vinci has a low projected hold in this so looking at opposing her serve when possible works well for me - although she has a very solid 22% ROI against left handers in her career, so Kerber may not have this all her own way.


Polona Hercog has got a lot of attention recently and I've noticed some people making ridiculous statements on social media about her potential.  She takes on the consistent Agnieszka Radwanska today who comfortably disposed of another young player (perhaps one with much more potential) in Madison Keys yesterday.


Radwanska starts at 1.25 for this and I'm looking at getting bigger if she goes behind in this.


I think the match between Sloane Stephens and Caroline Wozniacki is about the right price and with projected holds around the average mark it's tough to recommend a course of action for this.  I'm pretty interested to see how Stephens fares here so may just take a watching brief here with a view to future matches.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


2nd October Match Previews:-

Stan James have made a mistake on Li Na's price against Sabine Lisicki...

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There's just the 15 matches on the schedule today - but there's still a fair few opportunities to get involved in the trading markets...


In WTA Beijing, I'm expecting there to be breaks in the match between Jelena Jankovic and Galina Voskoboeva.  


Jankovic starts at around 1.38 and that's a little short for my liking, in a match where both ladies projected hold is low.  She's actually only held 59.8% on hard court in the past 12 months, 2.9% below the WTA hard court average.


Opposing either player's serve when possible works well for me, unless they look like they're holding without much difficulty.


I feel Svetlana Kuznetsova is a little over-rated on hard court currently and her opponent, Andrea Petkovic, has better hard court stats in the past year.


Petkovic has held 68.0% to 66.2%, and broken 40.6% to 37.2%, so Kuznetsova -for me - is a false favourite at 1.90 or so.  

Kuznetsova's projected hold of 59.5% is a little below the WTA mean so opposing her serve using selective triggers looks to be the way forward here.


The match between Sara Errani and Petra Kvitova is another that should see breaks - they're usually a feature of the Italian's matches - and looking at the hold/break stats only you'd have to make a case for Kvitova being too short at 1.43 for this.


However, when you take into account the dominant 5-0 head to head lead in Kvitova's favour, as well as the fact that Kvitova has much more impressive break point stats, so should win more of the key points, it looks a pretty fair line.


I read earlier somewhere that an incredible half of Kvitova's matches this year have gone 3 sets (I'll be able to prove that when the WTA Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet is released!) so there's a fair chance she'll trade higher at least.


Finally our WTA action finishes with Sabine Lisicki (above, pictured) against Li Na.  Stan James have made a bit of a mistake offering 1.44 on the Chinese, with the best price elsewhere being 1.37.  I make her 1.29, which is no surprise considering the general market love for Lisicki.


Her projected hold is pretty low for this, so if it's possible I'm going to look to oppose the Lisicki serve when I can.


There's an interesting match in prospect in the ATP event in Beijing where Lleyton Hewitt faces Fabio Fognini.  There's almost certainly going to be breaks in this with both players much stronger on return than on serve, and I feel there's value on Hewitt at 1.55 for this.


However the Australian missed the cut for the TennisRatings Tips due to his atrocious record as a slight favourite - but based on the hold/break stats I'd be surprised if he lost this.


Fognini is like Forrest Gump's box of chocolates.  You never know what you're going to get.  But you do know he's got a poor service game (he's held just 61.0% on hard courts in the past year) and he's only consistent at being inconsistent.  


His projected hold is very low for this so I'm going to oppose his serve when I can here.  Eagle-eyed readers may well have remembered the stats I posted on Hewitt in yesterday's previews regarding his comeback ability and those remain a consideration here.


There's not a great deal that interests me in the other ATP event in Tokyo, perhaps Janko Tipsarevic offers some value at around evens against Alexandr Dolgopolov but it's not a match I'm too keen to get involved in - either player can play like an elite player or a child who's never picked up a racket before...


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!


1st October Match Previews:-

Nikolay Davydenko's fitness and motivation may be questionable today...


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There's surely a match for everyone today with 32 matches on today's card.


In ATP BeijingNikolay Davydenko (above, pictured) may not be fully fit or motivated after his quotes following last week's shock defeat to the 'part-time' Pablo Cuevas.  


He's quoted as saying "I'm not feeling good. I have a wrist injury. It will take six, seven or nine weeks to heal. I'm not sure when it will be better," and "Because of the ATP rules, I couldn't pull out. I will take a rest and see how it goes. I will probably go to Beijing and maybe lose in the first round there as well."


There's no surprise that those comments have led to a huge price change with his opponent, Yen Hsun Lu, opening at 1.73 and currently trading at 1.43 with Pinnacle.  In normal circumstances those prices would represent value on the Russian but that clearly cannot be taken here.


Projected holds are low but unless Davydenko somehow looks 100% fit I wouldn't take a risk opposing Lu's serve.


I feel David Ferrer, with some very poor (for him) recent form, is too short at 1.20 against Vasek Pospisil but the Canadian's level has dropped since an excellent recent run, plus he doesn't have a very strong record as a heavy underdog.


However a lay from the start on Ferrer can be considered with a view to trading out with profit should Pospisil get in front.


Julien Benneteau lost his 9th consecutive ATP Final against the flavour of the month Joao Sousa on Sunday and must pick himself up to face Marinko Matosevic today.


I feel the Frenchman is much better on indoor hard than outdoor (his stats certainly back up that assertion) and the Australian journeyman may be a touch value at around evens here, considering the effect of a long tournament on Benneteau's ageing legs.


Projected holds are low and opposing either player's serve can be considered on occasion - and with both players above average for giving up break leads and getting breaks back, according to The Ultimate In-Play Spreadsheet, which is updated for subscribers today, it may be viable to lay either player a break up.  Particularly opposing Benneteau in this regard appears to make logical sense, especially if the match is long.


In WTA Beijing, I feel Laura Robson can potentially give Angelique Kerber a tough time today.  


The young Brit tends to up her game against top 10 opposition, with several victories already against the elite players even at this early stage of her career.


Projected holds are certainly a lot closer than the 1.33 about the German suggests, and it's also worth mentioning that Kerber tends to struggle against fellow left handers with a losing record (16-19) against them.  She has a poor -18% ROI against left handers in her career.


Perhaps 1.33 is a little chunky to lay pre-match with a view to trading out higher but it can definitely be considered, and should Kerber get a break up then the much lower price then definitely can.


Good luck in the markets and there will be more tomorrow!