Again today I’m finding more reasons NOT to choose a match for the blog than I have for selecting them. Not too many suprises yesterday with underdogs who I though had a chance not really making much of a fight of it. Let’s see if that continues today.
Also take care with the scoreboards for the non televised games. A few matches yesterday were sent into chaod for a few seconds as each scoreboard showed a different score.
Montanes leads the head to heads with Almagro 5-1 and he won their last match which was in March this year and also on a hard court. He won in 3 sets after Almagro took the first set.
Montanes has had his week off following his win in Austria and his expected first round exit lat week. Unfortunately that does mean that he has had just 1 match on hard courts recently.
Almagro reached the quarter finals last week losing to Tsonga but beating Gasquet in the third round. He starts as strong favourite on betfair at 1.32 mainly due to last week’s performances and also the fact that Montanes is short of match time on hard courts but taking into consideration the head to heads it has to be too low.
Both players lost in the first round last year so they won’t be losing any points. I would guess that montanes wants hard court match play before the US Open so he will be going all out for the win. Almagro may feel his preparation is on track but I still think he will want to stick around for a little longer this week.
I’ll be laying Almagro at the start and will go for Montanes to nick a tight match, possibly in 3 sets.
Update: Montanes was a mini break up in the first set tie break but couldn’t hold on. Almagro won 7-6, 6-4.
Melzer takes on Simon. Melzer is rightly slipping down the rankings and now sits at 18. Simon is moving in the opposite direction and will be keen to break into the top 10 again. He was ranked 6 before his injury problems.
Melzer has become one of the games least relaible “top” players and you get the impression he really doesn’t care too much. Such a shame to see as its not long ago that you could rely on him to fight for every point. His passion for the games would seem to have gone for the time being.
Melzer retired with an injury to his quad and has only been playing anything like normal on Friday. He has said he is still playing shots cautiously. “I will ofcourse give it my best effort to get some match practice”. Yeah whatever. He’s toast.
I’ll be backing Simon from the start.
Update: Melzer actually played quite well and took the first set in a tie break. Simon came back to win 6-7, 6-3, 7-5.
Fognini isn’t known for his skill on a hard court but beat Troicki in the last round. His stats for that match looked impressive but they were due to a large extent to Troicki’s terrible performance. Today he playes James Blake who has the home crowd support. Blake has been playing decent tennis as he usually does on home soil.
Blake usually performss well as a favourite in America and I think Fognini won’t be getting as many easy points today. Having said that, I think we will see a fair number of errors from both players.
Fognini may take it to 3 sets but I see Blake as the winner.
Update: Right from the first game Fognini was missing the court by a long way. The market loved him which allowed us to back Blake during that set at well above what the price should have been. Blake held on to take the set. In the second set Fognini was clearly tanking. He won just 1 point in the first 4 games.
At 0-3 he was actually laughing during the changeover.
Blake won 6-4, 6-2.