17:30 – Davydenko v Simon
Rankings are 39 and 33. Head to head is 4-1 to Simon.
Maybe this one will be decided by who is more motivated to do well. Simon hasn’t been in great form and is reportedly playing with an injury to his neck. He has no points to defend from last year. He hasn’t trained properly and asked for his match to be changed to Wednesday to get more time to recover.
Davydenko must be desperate to get back up the rankings. He hasn’t been doing himself any favours lately with inconsistent performances. He has shown short flashes of brilliance but that isn’t enough to win matches against the top players. Having said that he reached the final of the Qatar Open losing to Fed in straight sets.
The move in the prices has Davydenko now favourite at 1.81 and he is my pick for the win. Even though Simon is playing on home soil ( and the French usually do well at home) I think Davydenko will like the conditions and today will be the start of his return to form.
Back Davydenko on serve or back him from the start with half stakes. Add the rest if he breaks.
Update: What a horrible first set! Davydenko broke serve in the first game but was then broken straight back. Neither man could get a hold of serve in the first few games. So adding the other half of your stake after he broke wasn’t a great move.
I had seen enough before the end of the first set and left it at that.
Simon won 7-6, 6-4.
19:30 – Melzer v Seppi
Rankings are 10 and 47. Head to heads are 3-2 to Seppi but Melzer won their only match on a hard court.
Melzer needs to get his season back on track this week. He didn’t play well against Cilic and seemed easily distracted by crowd noise etc.
Seppi has been in decent form and recently won a Challenger event in Bergamo.
If Melzer performs at something like his proper level then this is a striaght sets win for him.
Back Melzer at the start of the match and green up after the first set. Make sure before doing so that you understand your strategy for if it goes against you.
Update: At least Melzer didn’t let me down.
He won 7-5, 6-3.