A later start this morning unless you’re so much of an adict you want to trade the qualifying rounds.
Robredo takes on Volandri in Sweden. Volandri ventured briefly onto grass managing just one win against fellow clay courter Mello. His form even on clay hasn’t been spectacular recently.
Robredo could be a little rusty as he has played just one match since returning from injury. He has a good record in this tournament and outclasses Volandri on clay. Their head to heads are 4-3 to Robredo and whilst all 7 matches were on clay they haven’t played for 4 years. He starts at 1.33 on Betfair which is perhaps a little low. I’ll back him with half stakes from the start and wait to see if he starts well. He has points to defend from last year so won’t give in easily.
Update: Robredo wasn’t in the form that I expected and whilst the first set was close with several breaks it was Volandri who took it. More breaks of serve in the second set but at 5-5 Robredo retired.
Volandri won 7-5, 5-5(retired)
Tatishvili v Pironkova: Pironkova reached the quarter finals at Wimbledon beating Zvonareva and Venus Williams in straight sets. However today she is on clay which isn’t her best surface. She has lost 7 of her last 8 matches on clay.
Tatishvili has won 5 from her last 6 clay court matches.
On clay for the last 12 months they are both barely managing to win over 50% of their service games. Tatishvili’s stats for return of serve are slightly better than her opponent’s.
We should see lots of breaks but I expect Tatishvili to be slightly less pathetic on serve. Pironkova hasn’t played a competitive match since Wimbldon.
Update: The players exchanged breaks in the first few games until Pironkova was able to hold for 4-2. Up until that stage Betfair hadn’t turned the match In Play and they briefly did so but then suspended the market. The market remained suspended which was a little nervy as I had moved my green to Pironkova leaving a reasonable red on Tatishvili. If Betfair leave the market suspended then they usually void the market but you never know for sure so watching the scoreboard was a little nervy for a while especially when Tatishvili went a break up and held. Pironkova broke back but was broken again. At that point Betfair voided the market and the money appeared back in my account.
Pironkova broke back and ended up winning 6-2, 7-5.
Montanes takes on Frenchman Simon in Stuttgart. Montanes is more a clay court player yet Simon leads the head to heads on clay 3-1.
Montanes likes this tournament though and reached the final last year which he won when Monfils retired injured.
Simon lost in the second round last year. He doesn’t have a good record in this tournament and oddly in his last 3 appearances he has only played German opponents. Today he avoids the Germans but faces the defending champion so he may feel he is a little cursed when it comes to the draws in Stuttgart.
Simon starts as favourite on Betfair at 1.59 and you have to feel that a motivated Montanes has a great chance.
I’m going for a Montanes win in 3 sets but as both are quite capable of starting slowly I will wait before getting involved.
Update: Simon won a break in Montanes’ first service game to go 2-0 . I layed at that stage and Montanes broke back, held and broke again! Perfect! I stayed out after that which was an inspired decision as Simon broke back and broke again to take the set. I layed again. The set went to a tie break which Montanes won. I was tempted to leave the trade open but as I avoid trading deciding sets whenever possible I greened up and shut the market down.
Montanes won 4-6, 7-6, 6-2.