Quarter finals day. Is it my perception or are there more injuries around than we normally have at this early stage of the season? Maybe the slightly extended off-season didn’t work too well.
Stakhovsky was pretty average yesterday and in the early stages of his match with Ito he seemed very nervous. It was almost like watching Niculescu with almost every return being a slice. When he attacked Ito didn’t know how to handle it. Maybe Stak’s confidence isn’t too hot at the moment.
Nieminen has had two decent wins so far and is yet to lose a set. When he is playing well he’s tough to beat on an indoor hard court.
They have played 4 times before and always on clay. Nieminen leads the head to heads 3-1.
Stakhovsky improved as the match went on but he won’t get away with another slow, nervy start today. From a trading point of view we need him to come out firing from the start to push Nieminen’s price up above its initial postion of 1.42 .
Its difficult to see Stak being able to win this one based on yesterday’s performance.
Gasquet came through a tough match with Monfils last night. In the early games Monfils appeared to be injured. The Doctor was called and the market panic suggested that he was about to retire or at least that he would retire after the opening set was complete. Bizarrely Monfils fought hard for the rest of the set. He wasn’t able to get the break back but in set 2 he controlled the set. Gasquet was too strong in the decider though and deserved the win.
he plays another Frenchman today in Benneteau. Benny hasn’t lost a set so far and looks in good form. At the Australian open he reached the 3rd round where he lost in 5 sets to Tipsarevic.
Gasquet has won both their previous matches in straight sets. Both matches were on a hard court ( in fact both were in Sydney! ).
The sets should be close with both men serving well so Gasquet’s starting price of 1.42 looks too low. If Gasquet breaks early its worth laying him but I will be looking for a higher price on him before i back him as i feel he will have the edge in this one.