I’m back!!! Hosting companies have issues from time to time but the sites being down for a day and a half is taking the piss. Anyway, don’t get me started on that! I have just finished the post in Word format so will copy and paste…
Federer takes on Malisse. I don’t think Malisse has the weapons to trouble Fed. He has beaten him once in a Davis Cup match but that was in 1999. 1.11 is always worth a lay but I aren’t very hopeful for this one.
Update: Federer won 6-4, 6-3.
Djokovic still hasn’t lost a match in 2011. Is Garcia-Lopez the man to do it in Madrid? Just about anything can happen in tennis and 1.05 is a cheap lay.
Update: Djokovic won 6-1, 6-2.
Berdych v Monaco: Berdych started quite nervously yesterday and seemed to be playing safe with a lot of his shots against Granollers. As soon as he started to play aggressively Granollers had no reply and Berdych took the second set 6-0. If Monfils hadn’t had food poisoning and quit I expected him to beat Monaco in the last round. If Berdych plays aggressively from the start then he will breeze past Monaco. The courts are on the fast side for clay which will help Berdych’s serve once it gets going. I’ll go for a half stake on Berdych at the start just incase he starts slow again and I can get the rest on higher up the ladder. I don’t see Berdych losing this.
Update: Berdych won 7-5, 6-3.
Bellucci is next up for Murray. Yesterday’s match with Simon was pretty much a standard Murray game. He started with a break of serve in the first game but was then immediately broken himself. An up and down set finally went to Murray with a late break. The second was close and it was Simon’s turn for the late break. Then 6-0 to Murray in the third.
Bellucci came through a very tight 3 setter with Mayer who quit in the third set. I expected Mayer to take that and perhaps would have done if fit.
I will be hoping for a better price to back Murray. That worked well yesterday but I am less confident in Bellucci as an opponent.
Update: Bellucci won 6-4, 6-3.
Nadal and Del Potro is perhaps the match everyone wants to see today. Nadal is at 1.17 on Betfair and has won his last 35 matches on clay. Del Potro had an injury scare against Youzhny but seemed unaffected in his next match. You can be certain Nadal will move him around the court more than Cilic did although to be fair Cilic was trying to do that. Del Potro’s serve has been solid and he could keep this close in the first set. I think it is definitely worth a lay at 1.17 . It would be quite a surprise if the Argentinian is able to beat Nadal and its expecially difficult in Spain.
Update: Del Potro withdrew before the match.
Llodra and Gimeno-Traver should have a tough match. G-T seemed to be down and out when Melzer was serving for the first set but Melzer was broken and G-T won the set on a tie break. He finished the win in straight sets. He was also impressive against Gasquet when he came back from a set down in the previous round.
Llodra started badly against Cipolla who was serving well in the first set. Llodra pulled back from a break down to take the set and the second set was all Llodra. This will be very close but I have to favour Gimeno-Traver. Both players have served well but I’ll be staying out until I get a look at how they start the match.
Update: Llodra won 1-6, 6-4, 7-6.
Both Tsonga and Soderling seem to have found some form this week, perhaps due to the slightly quicker courts in Madrid. Soderling leads the head to head 5-1. Their last 2 matches have gone to 3 sets with Soderling taking the opening set. As usual Soderling’s serve will be the key factor. He is stronger on return of serve than the Frenchman so if he is able to throw down a few aces/unreturnables then he will take this one. Tsonga has also been serving better this week but I think he will be more impatient than Soderling in the long rallies.
Update: Soderling won 7-6, 7-5.
Ferrer and Stakhovsky are last up today. Stak has been one of the surprises of the week knocking out claycourter Montanes and big serving John Isner. Today’s opponent is probably the second best claycourt player in the world and has reached the final of the last 2 clay tournaments losing to Nadal both times. A slight concern here is his 0-6 second set performance against Mannarino but other than that he has been his usual dependable self. The first set could be close and Stak would have a good chance in a tie break as he has been serving extremely well this week. Another cheap lat at 1.1 .
Update: Ferrer won 6-3, 7-6.