I suppose technically it should just be January 12th as they are all after midnight! 🙂
A very enjoyable night last night. I laid Querrey and was lucky that Kohlschreiber broke in the next game. The Anderson lay from the blog post worked out perfectly.
Vesnina ran away with her match against Stephens and Barthel was broken in her first service game giving an entry of around 1.80 and then took control of the set and the match.
In the cricket I laid Australia but ended up taking a small red. The England v India ODI was much better and delivered a respectable profit.
Tonight I won’t be trading as I’m taking the shortest of breathers before we go into 2 weeks of Grand Slam nightshifts.
The Heineken Open final will be between Ferrer and Kohlschreiber. Ferrer had an easy semi final against an injured Monfils. He had a little wobble in his first match against Lu as he was getting used to the speed of the court. He had no such problems in the quarter final match with Lacko.
Kohlschreiber has been very reliable on serve this week and has succeeded in improving on his semi final finish from last year. He has had a lot of success in Auckland. He won the title in 2008. He has reached at least the quarter finals or semi finals for the last few years.
Ferrer leads the head to heads 7-3 and has won their last 3 matches. The most recent was at this tournament back in 2011 when Ferrer won in 3 sets. Since then the Spaniard has improved his hard court game beyond all recognition.
Ferrer is favourite although his SP of 1.20 is ridiculous. It doesn’t take into account Kohlschreiber’s form this week and in particular his serving. That serve will keep him in the match and I think tie breaks will happen.
Lay Ferrer and move the green onto Ferrer before a tie break or after Kohlschreiber breaks in the first set.
Update: Ferrer was broken in his first service game but pulled back to take the set in a tie break.
Ferrer won 7-6, 6-1.
The Hobart final with see Barthel take on Vesnina. They have played just once before which was last September in Beijing. Vesnina won easily in straight sets.
Both have been impressive this week. Barthel has a bad habit of starting slowly. In the first round against Barty she lost the opening set but came back to win the next 2 sets for the loss of just 1 game. In the next round against Scheepers she was broken first. Against Pironkova she broke serve in the first game but still lost her own first service game. Against Flipkens last night she was unable to hold her first service game.
Vesnina struggled with form last season but seems to be getting back to something like her best form. She has served very well although was broken in her opening service game against Gajdosova, Shvedova and Soler Espinosa. It wasn’t until the semi final where she started quickly.
Barthel starts as a very slight favourite. She reached first main tour final just last week in this event last year and is defending champion. Vesnina has reached 6 main tour finals in her career and lost them all.
Despite her previous record in finals I am going with Vesnina to get her first WTA title. Barthel may well start slowly and if she does I think Vesnina will be able to take advantage. I see this going to 3 sets.
Update: Once again Barthel was broken in her first service game!
Vesnina won 6-3, 6-4.
In Sydney it’s Anderson v Tomic.
Anderson didn’t look sharp in the early stages of his last 2 matches but found his timing as the matches went on. Tomic has also improved as matches have gone on.
This will be dominated by serve and as neither is amazing on return of serve I expect a tie break or two. Head to heads are 1-1 and it’s hard to pick a winner. I am giving Tomic a slight edge due to home advantage ( and the support that goes with it).
Update: Tomic took the opening set and in the second set we got our tie break which went Anderson’s way.
Tomic won 6-3, 6-7, 6-3.