We saw a few upsets yesterday. Whether Wozniacki counts as one depends on how bad you thought her injury was. Begu won in 2 sets.
I had expected Mchale to come through but Bartens had other ideas. Raonic needed 5 sets to get past Giraldo which could mean we get a higher price on him for the next game than we might have had if he had won easily.
Monaco really should have been too strong for Garcia Lopez but the Spaniard won the match in a 5th set tie break. The US Open is the only Grand Slam to have deciding set tie breaks. Maybe the Americans have a short attention span and wouldn’t enjoy the extended deciding sets that happen in other Slams.
Vesnina found some of her old form to beat Peng in straight sets. Britain’s Konta had an excellent straight sets win over Babos which will do her confidence a world of good.
It’s 3 years since Wozniack beat Safarova. The Czech player has beaten her twice since then. Both have been in good recent form although Wozniack has shown more tendency to crumble against a strong opponent. 1.61 almost seems like value but since Wozniack is capable of hitting big serves I’d advise waiting for 1.80 .
Kukushkin has beaten Nieminen in both their previous matches yet starts today as slight underdog. In recent matches Kukushkin has played some excellent tennis but rarely for an entire match. I’m not confident of him being able to sustain a high level. The good news for Kukushkin is that he is playing Nieminen and so often the Fin can be beaten with average tennis.
I will start with a part stake lay on Nieminen and will lay more if his price drops below 1.60. This looks like a match to not leave trades to run to the end. Neither player is overly reliable.
Harrison was terrible in his last match against Granollers and put up very little resistance. He starts at 1.50 against Becker who is capable of excellent play on hard courts. ( Having said that he lost his last match to Nieminen! ). When Becker serves well he plays well. I will watch his first 2 service games and if he is holding easily I will lay Harrison.
Melzer lost quite tamely against Isner in his last match. Before that he had a real battle with big serving McClune and won it in a third set tie break.. Whilst that doesn’t a lot about his form it does suggest that he is up for a fight at the moment. Today’s opponent is Klahn, another American.
Klahn has had some success on the Challenger tour. As far as I can tell he has played just 3 matches on the main tour and lost them all.
1.40 isn’t a price I want to put too much money on Melzer at but in the best of 5 sets format class will usually come through. Melzer’s experience alone ought to be enough to get him through. I’ll wait for a price over 1.60 to 1.65.