Korolev v A Beck
Rankings are 80 and 40 and the head to head is 2-1 to Beck, although both his wins were on clay.
Beck’s stats on serve make him worth backing on his service games. He only gets 58% of 1st serves in but wins 81% of service games. He also saves 66% of break points against him.
Beck seems to prefer clay but his serve will see him through this one.
Update: They don’t come much closer than that! I thought this was all over when Beck won the first 2 sets but Korolev pulled back to 2-2. Korolev seemed to be the stronger player in the first 2 or 3 games of the deciding set but then Beck remembered how to serve. He broke serve for 4-3 and at 5-4 he had 2 match points only for Korolev to pull him back. But he held his nerve to serve out for the match.
Beck won 6-3, 6-4, 2-6, 2-6, 6-4
Melzer v Safin
Rankings are 38 and 58 and head to head is 3-1 to Melzer. He has won their last 2 meetings which both went to 3 sets.
Very interesting match up which could be very close. Melzer gets 60% of 1st serves in, wins 78% of service games and saves 56% of break points against him. He is 1.70 on BF.
Back him at the start of his service games.
Safin has the ability to win the match but his inconsistency lets him down. I’m favouring Melzer to win a tight match.
Update: I certainly didn’t expect Safin to win the first set 6-1! Normal service was then resumed and Melzer came through to win the next 3 tight sets.
1-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4
Bartolli v Clijsters
Bartolli is ranked 14 and Clijsters is unranked but the former world number 1 has beaten Bartolli both times that they have met, the latest one being last month. She won in straight sets.
Clijsters’ come back from retirement has been very impressive and i would expect her to win this fairly easily. Bartolli’s lack of consistency is her downfall and i think that will be the case in this match.
15-40 should work well or you could simply back Clijsters from the start and green up after the first set.
Update: Clijsters won but I didnt expect her to lose the first set so that wasnt a good call. She got her act together in sets 2 and 3 to win 5-7, 6-1, 6-2