The ATP Tour continues its mini grass court season in the run up to Wimbledon with two tournaments in Eastbourne and the Netherlands on week 25.
Week 24 ended on a high with two nice-priced winners on the grass in Halle and Queen’s when Roger Federer and Alejandro Falla went far past the overs mark and Grigor Dimitrov and Feli Lopez did the same in set one of their London final.
They play on slower grass at the Topshelf Open this week in Rosmalen in the south of the Netherlands, while the wind coming in off the sea tends to be a big factor in breezy Eastbourne at the AEGON International.
We start with 15 matches on Monday, starting at 10:00 UK time in Rosmalen, but the first match that catches my eye today is Bernard Tomic against Andrey Golubev.
On all grass court form that looks a cert for Tomic, with Golubev from the ‘grass is for cows’ school of thought that shows in his 4-12 career record and the fact that he hasn’t played on the green stuff since 2011.
But I wouldn’t trust Tomic one iota and better bets can be found elsewhere, starting at 11:00 UK time in Eastbourne.
Ivo Karlovic vs Jeremy Chardy
It’s hard to see Chardy being up for this match facing the serving power of Karlovic on a court that will be fresh and quick in its first match usage of the season.
Ivo was beaten in a couple of tie breaks by Yen Hsun Lu last week on quick grass in Halle, which was a little surprising, but he’ll be doubly keen to go deep here after that defeat.
We all know about Ivo’s game and his liking for the quicker surfaces, while Chardy’s record on grass shows that he’s never beaten a top-50 ranked player on grass in his career so far.
Granted, plenty of those opponents have been tough, but he also managed to lose to Juan Monaco on grass at Wimbledon a couple of years ago and for me his elongated swings aren’t really conducive to being a decent player on the green stuff.
His big serve is a threat in these conditions, but in their first career meeting Chardy’s record against other big servers is quite poor, which is another negative for the Frenchman.
My concern about the minus 1.5 games on Ivo is the chance of a 7-6, 6-7, 7-6 scoreline, so I’ll stick with the straight win on the Croat at 1.57.
Sam Querrey vs Kyle Edmund
There are a few matches today that I like the look of for overs bets – including Chris Guccione to take the first set with Gilles Simon past the 9.5 games mark – but for over total games I like the chances of Edmund to do enough for over 22.5 games against Querrey here.
The American has slumped down to number six in the US rankings and he’s appeared to really not enjoy his tennis for a long time now.
Querrey was flat yet again in a poor effort against Stan Wawrinka last week in conditions that he should have been far more competitive in on grass and he’s no cert to win this against the talented Brit.
Kyle pushed eventual finalist Simon to a 7-5, 7-6 scoreline here last year and although the Querrey serve will probably be enough if he uses it well Edmund can serve a ball too and Big Sam may not break too often.
Down at number 59 in the 2014 stats for return games won – behind Jerzy Janowicz, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Kevin Anderson – it looks likely that the sets will be close in this one, making the overs a good option at 2.0.
Other potential long ones include Kenny De Schepper vs Steve Johnson and Igor Sijlsing vs Thiemo de Bakker, while I’m also tempted with Tobias Kamke to beat Dan Evans and the minus 3.5 games on Adrian Mannarino to beat Matt Ebden.
Back Karlovic to beat Chardy at 1.57
Back over 22.5 games in Querrey/Edmund at 2.0