I’ll keep it short and sweet this morning as I am short of time…
Leyton Hewitt takes on claycourter Leonardo Mayer. Hewitt hasn’t played a match since March when he lost in straight sets to Lu. The Aussie has won 8 of his last 9 on grass. He must have thought he was on his way out when he drew Federer and must be thrilled to be facing lucky loser Mayer. Not a great price at 1.30 but probably a fair one.
Update: Hewitt’s first service game was shaky but after that he served well. After a few games he got to grips wity Mayer’s serve and always seemed in control after that. Hewitt won 6-2, 6-3.
After his performance yesterday Berdych has to be a lay at 1.13 against Hernych. Berdych was within a couple of points of going out in the first round against Bemelmans (who?) so clearly isn’t in top form. Hernych has never taken a set from his fellow countryman and i expect Berdych to win this but you never know….
Update: Berdych wasn’t over convincing but won 6-3, 7-6.
Stepanek v Ljubicic: Ljubicic made a slow start against Sweeting but once he got into his stride the American had no chance. If he can get his serve going from the start he could run away with the first set. Stepanek loves to serve and volley which ofcourse is perfect for grass courts and starts as slight favourite on Betfair. My gut feeling is that Ljubicic will take this although looking at recent matches Stepanek is understandably favourite. I’ll wait to see how they start.
Update: When Stepanek has a bad set he REALLY has a bad set. Ljubicic took the first 6 games of the match but Stepanek came back to win 0-6, 7-5, 6-4.
Simon seems a very good price at 1.46 against Mannarino. Mannarino served very well in his match against Gulbis and has played 2 matches on Grass. This is Simon’s first match after the claycourt season so he may take a few games to make the transition but he surely has enough to get past a player 38 places below him in the rankings. Simon will need his serve to be flowing from the start though or he could find himself having to battle back from a break down.
Update: Simon did make a slow start and Mannarino was 4-1 up. Simon came back to take the set in a tie break. Mannarino fought back to level the match when play was suspended. They resume tomorrow.
Thursday’s update: Simon retired at 0-3 in the third set.