Kanepi v Babos (Indoor hard):
Babos has improved her ranking from 300 last year to her current 67. A fantastic achievement. She likes to hit the ball hard and can over power her opponents. I don’t expect her to be able to do that today but she is quite capable of hurting the 5th seed if Kanepi gives as many chances as she gave to Rodionova yesterday.
Kanepi hasn’t played a lot of tennis since winning in Brisbane in January. Straight sets losses to Scheepers and Soler Espinosa were poor to say the least.
Babos won in Monterrey in February and reached the semi finals of the ITF event in Mexico. Both those tournaments were on hard courts.
We should have live video for this one and I will wait to see how Kanepi starts. Her last match may help to play her into some decent form but that can’t be taken for granted. Either way 1.40 is no price to be backing her. If she isn’t making many unforced errors in the early games then that’s a good sign but there’s a great chance that we will get the opportunity to get her nearer evens. Too many unknowns for me at the start although a speculative lay at 1.40 might be a good option.
Update: Babos broke early and we got the 2.00 price we were looking for. Kanepi certainly wasn’t dominating but she managed to break back to 4-4. Another break won her the set.
The second set was close too and Babos broke for a 4-3 lead. Kanepi immediately broke back but was herself broken in the very next game. Set Babos.
At the start of the third they were all over the place. Kanepi twice broke the Babos serve but was broken bak in the next game and the set went to a tie break. Kanepi finally took control to win the tie break 7-2.
Kanepi won 7-5, 4-6, 7-6.
Harrison v Bogomolov Jr ( clay)
These clay courts are playing very fast and looking at purely clay court stats could be misleading.
The head to heads are 1-1 with both matches going to 3 sets. Both matches were on hard courts.
Bogomolov returned to the motherland having previously called himself an American and his form just hasn’t been the same since.
Harrison played well enough in the recent Davis cup match against France on clay Taking a set from Tsonga. He has also recently pushed Federer to a tie break, taken Simon to 3 sets and beaten Troicki on hard courts.
Harrison has to be the pick for me based on recent form. 1.56 isn’t the best of prices but its enough to put part stake on and manage it from there. I’m not sure Bogomolov will manage 3 sets this time around but he often surprises me!
Update: He did surprise me! A single break gave Bogomolov the first set as Harrison struggled on serve. Harrison’s serve sorted itself out for the second set and it was the American’s turn to get the single break.
In the third Harrison went a double break up. Bogomolov pulled a break back but Harrison took the set and the match.
Harrison won 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.