Monday was a better day at the Olympic tennis tournament with two winners from my three bets.
On another tricky day of betting in what has been quite an unpredictable tournament so far we saw Nikolay Davydenko win a match on a grass court, which pretty much sums this event up.
Shuai Peng with a 5.5 game head start was a fairly straightforward winner over the wildly inconsistent Petra Kvitova, although she ended up needing most of those 5.5 games in the end.
Yanina Wickmayer then produced a good performance to force Caroline Wozniacki to a decider and over the total games mark for another winner, but Grigor Dimitrov had a day to forget in a poor loss to Gilles Simon.
Tuesday at the All England Club sees the Brits in action again, with Andy Murray, Heather Watson and Laura Robson all in action and all have chances to get through to the next round – some more than others.
Murray should see off Jarkko Nieminen with a bit to spare, while Robson has a big ask against Maria Sharapova, but Watson has a chance against Maria Kirilenko.
I’ve never been a big fan of Kirilenko and it’s surely likely to be the case that Watson on home soil fighting for Great Britain will want this more than her opponent today and she has a great chance of taking at least a set.
Watson likes to counter punch and she should enjoy Kirilenko’s attacking style today, as she quite clearly didn’t against fellow counter puncher Aga Radwanska here a few weeks ago.
This should be an entertaining match, with both players capable of hitting plenty of winners and despite being inside the world’s top-20, Kirilenko is far from immune to defeat against lower ranked players, as losses to Karin Knapp and Sloane Stephens this year have shown.
I expect Watson to come out fighting in this one, but I’m not totally convinced that she’ll be able to hold her best level for long enough to win, so the bet is on the Brit +1.5 sets at 1.67.
On the men’s side today the match-up between Andy Roddick and Novak Djokovic will draw a crowd of hopefully more than the pitiful number of spectators that watched the Wozniacki game yesterday.
These two clearly aren’t the best of pals and if Roddick ever had a chance then it’s today in this tournament, but it’s hard to see him having the weapons these days to beat Nole.
I’m not convinced about Djokovic’s desire in this event, so I’m leaving that one and backing Marin Cilic and Kei Nishikori in a double instead.
Nishikori has the plum draw today against grass-hating Russian Davydenko, who he’s meeting for the first time and their similar playing style should see the younger, keener Japanese star home.
Cilic takes on another veteran in Lleyton Hewitt, who should give the Croatian a test, but he’s not got the game or the body these days to sustain a challenge against the top players.
It’s another first time meeting, but I suspect that Cilic’s big game will be too much for the battling Aussie and I can only see one winner in that one.
Finally, and I know I’ll probably regret this, but I’m taking a chance on Feliciano Lopez to take down Juan Monaco at a nice price of 1.96
The Spaniard enjoys the grass far more than today’s opponent, who was flattered by his win over David Goffin yesterday, with the young Belgian making too many errors.
Monaco is the man in form at the moment, which is why he’s favourite today, but Lopez showed rare battling qualities to pull out the win over Dmitry Tursunov yesterday and he usually plays above himself here at Wimbledon.
The opposite tends to be true of Monaco, who avoids grass as much as Davydenko does and Lopez, who has a 3-2 career head-to-head over the Argentine, has every chance of prevailing with conditions in his favour.
Best Bets: Back Watson +1.5 sets to beat Kirilenko at 1.67; Back Cilic and Nishikori in a double at 1.66; Back Lopez to beat Monaco at 1.96.
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