Wednesday’s play in Kuala Lumpur features the remaining first round clashes and the start of the second round in the Malaysian Open.
Tuesday’s best bets were both winners, as Mischa Zverev defeated Horacio Zeballos in straight sets, while Vasek Pospisil and Victor Hanescu played out the expected three setter and the overs was successful there.
There are six matches on the card at the Putra Stadium on Wednesday, starting at 7am UK time and I would give chances to at least three of the betting underdogs.
Ryan Harrison vs Joao Sousa
Wildcard Harrison has only ever won one match in a main draw in Asia and he looks a very shaky favourite here against the in-form Sousa. The American will be rusty having not played a match since the US Open and the stodgy conditions here in Kuala Lumpur will not be to his liking.
Sousa on the other hand is in great touch, having made the semi finals in St Petersburg last week and if this turns into a bit of a grind I can only see one winner here – and it isn’t the impatient Harrison.
Outside of San Jose, where it was quickish, Harrison has won just the one match in the main draw of an indoor hard court tournament lifetime and my only worry here is Sousa’s conditioning after slumping in that semi final last week. He has had a few days off to recover and hopefully that will be enough. It’s worth a slight risk at 2.25 in this one.
Marcos Baghdatis vs Carlos Berlocq
Another player who is more known for success on clay, but who had a good run indoors last week is Berlocq, who made the last eight in Metz and narrowly failed to reach the semi final there, defeating Philipp Kohlschreiber along the way.
I’m not sure the prices are quite right here, with Baghdatis, who has won two of his last seven matches on the tour looking very short here at 1.45. The Cypriot has won two of their three career meetings so far, but the last one went the way of Berlocq and on grass of all surfaces when Baggy was a 1.20 shot.
Berlocq has improved a lot on hard courts this season and I can’t see this being at all comfortable for Baghdatis, who may struggle to get the ball past the Argentine regularly enough in these conditions. The 1.65 on Charly winning a set looks good here.
Adrian Mannarino vs Nico Almagro
One clay courter who hasn’t improved on indoor hard is Almagro, who is generally awful at this time of the year. The Spaniard has lost eight of his last 13 indoors going back to this event two years ago and he’s lost his last five straight in Asia.
Mannarino isn’t one to trust, as he showed last week with a really poor effort against Evgeny Donskoy, but he gave Nico real problems in their one and only prior meeting on a hard court in Auckland and he certainly has it in his locker to do so again. Whether he brings it to the court is another matter, but he has enough to take a set here at around 1.70.
Back Sousa to beat Harrison at 2.25
Back Berlocq +1.5 sets to beat Baghdatis at 1.65
Back Mannarino +1.5 sets to beat Almagro at 1.70