18:00 – Klaasen v Ram
Rankings are 417 and 98. They haven’t played before.
Ram played a solid enough game yesterday. He is the defending champion here and I expect him to reach the quarter finals.
Ram starts at 1.50 on Betfair which is due to his recent poor form but he has a lot of motivation to do well here to protect his rankings points . He has the added advantage of playing infront of his home crowd.
Klaasen has been around for years but isn’t the best returner. Ram likes to serve and volley and Klaasen will have to hit many passing shots to stand a chance. He just isn’t consistent enough to achieve that. He lost a set in qualifying to a player ranked over 1100.
Back Ram from the start to green up after the first set or back him on serve.
Update: Ram was well ahead in the final set but Klaasen pulled him back to a tie break.
Klaasen won 5-7, 6-1, 7-6.
20:00 – Dancevic v Mahut
Rankings are 336 and 144. Head to head is 1-0 to Mahut.
They did play in the Wimbledon qualifiers this year and Mahut won easily in straight sets 6-3, 6-0.
Dancevic has a great serve which had gone missing over the last 12 months or more. However in his last match he served better and hit 14 aces. Having said that his first serve percentage was just 50% but he served just 3 double faults
Mahut looked a little uninterested in his last match against Falla and may not be up for this tournament.
Both men can be backed on serve but if Dancevic serves as well as he is capable of doing he seems to have more motivation than Mahut and I give him the edge.
Wait until each player has had one service game before getting involved.
Update: Mahut seemed to hurt his back in the opening game and asked for the medic. I think traders were wary of him retiring injured so not too much money was coming into the market. Once Dancevic broke serve in the first set tie break things woke up a lot. He won a tight tie break.
Mahut tailed off in the second set and wasn’t really in the contest.
Dancevic won 7-6, 6-3.