Sela has won both his completed matched against Phau. The most recent was in 2010 though. They did play in 2012 but Sela retired.
Sela has beaten Rosol and Lacko in straight sets. I felt Rosol gave him a lot of help in the first round but expected Lacko to get the better of him. He didn’t give much away though and deserved the win.
Phau was a set and a break down against Youzhny but the Russian seemed to lose interest. All credit to Phau though for taking the opportunity.
You have to favour Sela in this one but I think it will be a lot closer than his 1.48 SP suggests. I will wait for higher rather than lay him.
In the opening games of Gicquel’s match with Simon it looked like it was going to be one way traffic. Simon was in total control and cruising. However we know Gilles Simon better than that don’t we? Gicquel took the opening set in a tie break and finsihed the match in straight sets.
Today’s opponent Nieminen wrote in his blog that he has been ill over the last 2 to 3 weeks and was just trying to recover from the Davis Cup matches as best he could.
In his first round match he faced an opponent who had never won a main draw match and was perhaps a little fortunate that Nedovyesov retired at 4-4 in the third set.
He also struggled against Herbert who served for the first set and Nieminen scraped through in two tie breaks.
Gicquel and the crowd will be well up for this match and Nieminen won’t have be feeling any less tired after an extra two matches. 1.53 has to be a lay. This could be one match too many for Nieminen.
Garcia Lopez leads the head to heads 2-1 over Giraldo but it was the Colombian who won their only previous meeting on clay. That was almost 3 years ago.
Both had excellent wins in the last round with Garcia Lopez beating in form Lorenzi and Giraldo taking his match with Granollers in two tie breaks.
Giraldo starts at 1.78 which I feel is about right. I am favouring him to win this one but will look to lay Garcia Lopez in play below 1.60. I can see this going to 3 sets
Gimeno Traver beat defending champion Zeballos last night to mess up one of my tips. He has never served that well whenever I have backed him!
The Spaniard faces another clay specialist in Leonardo Mayer. Mayer beat Robredo in a very close 3 set match in the last round.
They have only played once which was almost 6 years ago. Mayer won in 3 sets in a clay court Challenger.
I will be amazed if Gimeno Traver can serve as well as he did yesterday but he will be able to push Mayer very close. I am going with the Argentinian though. He has also served well but will have to battle for every point against Traver who has proved he is striking the ball well this week.
Mayer starts at 1.82 and i will have part stake on him from the start. The rest will go on him above 2.20 .