Anderson v Lopez:
Anderson won their only previous match which was in Brisbane at the start of the 2011 season.
Both men have huge serves and on grass should be almost unplayable. So it comes down to who is better on return of serve and is in a position to take advantage of a slight drop in the serve intensity.
Anderson has had to come through 2 three set matches to get to this stage. He came back from being a set down against Britain’s James Ward and then was a break down in the third set against Stakhovsky when Stak retired.
Lopez has had just 1 match so far and also had to play 3 sets against Darcis. He did retire from his 1st round match at the French Open but would seem to be over that injury.
Anderson is happier to stay on the baseline whereas Lopez will look to follow his serve into the net. His reactions are sharper than Anderson’s and on grass that makes a huge difference.
Obviously this will be a serve dominated match but I expect Lopez to come through it. The sets will either be tie breaks or they will have a single break in each.
Nalbandian v Roger-Vasselin:
Roger-Vasselin beat Roddick in the last round although the way the American is playing Edouard was perhaps disappointed to drop a set.
Nalbandian’s recent results have been less than spectacular. He did reach the semi finals in Serbia but since then has reached just one second round which was in Rome. A 4 sets loss in the first round of the French Open to Adrian Ungar won’t have helped his confidence.
Roger-Vasselin seems most at home on the grass which allows him to serve and volley. Nalbandian at his best would welcome that type of opponent as his erturn game can be superb. However he has yet to prove that he is in great grass form so I feel his starting price of 1.40 is a little tight.
I will wait a couple of games to assess Nalbandian’s form but at the moment I intend to lay him. However if he looks sharp on return of serve and hits a couple of passing shots against the approaching Frenchman I may look to get a healthy Back price on him.
This is down to Nalbandian’s form. If he’s sharp he wins. If he is struggling to hold serve and making a few too many unforced errors he is in a lot of trouble here.