Sunday is finals day in Chennai and Brisbane, while qualifying is underway in week two’s ATP 250 events in Auckland and Sydney.
Stanislas Wawrinka and Aljaz Bedene will battle it out for the Chennai Open title in India, while Roger Federer and Milos Raonic compete for the Brisbane International crown in Australia.
Taking the positives from Saturday and Federer’s very comfortable success over Grigor Dimitrov meant that all six of my ‘sure things’ have been successful this week, but things didn’t go to plan elsewhere.
Milos Raonic brought his best serving to the court to take down Kei Nishikori in three tie breaks after I had gone against the grain with a quick win for the Japanese as my long shot.
A slow start in the Doha final from Tomas Berdych in each set cost me my remaining wager of Saturday and in truth it was by far the worst showing of the week from Berdych, who simply didn’t turn up on the day.
Roger Federer vs Milos Raonic
At 09:00 UK time on Sunday Federer faces Raonic for the ninth time in their careers, with the Swiss maestro leading the Canadian 7-1 currently and he looks a good bet to complete the week of ‘sure things’ with.
Raonic’s only win over Federer came indoors in Bercy at the end of last season at a time when the Swiss had just won Basel a few days prior and had more than half an eye on the World Tour Finals to come.
Indeed, at those World Tour Finals Federer gained swift revenge in a 6-1, 7-6 win over the Canadian, who might have to actually break his opponent if he wants to win again on Sunday.
Raonic failed to create one break point in three sets against Sam Groth and was unable to break Nishikori on Saturday and with Fed needing this one win to have achieved 1000 match wins it really doesn’t have the feel of an upset about it to me.
Clearly, Raonic’s return game is as poor as ever it was, and he’ll have to serve amazingly well and hope for another couple of tie breaks to get the win here.
It doesn’t seem likely and a similar bet to Saturday’s looks the call here, with minus 1.5 games on Federer at 1.41 looking a solid choice and for a long shot how about siding with Federer to win it with a minus 4.5 game handicap at around 3.30?
The Swiss's last two best-of-three wins against Raonic have seen him cover such a handicap – at the World Tour Finals indoors and on outdoor hard in Cincy and he tends to win one set at least with a bit to spare against The Missile.
Stanislas Wawrinka vs Aljaz Bedene
Wawrinka and Bedene meet for the third straight year at this tournament and this looks one match too far for the would-be Brit.
Wawrinka has been in rare form this week in Chennai and a similar scoreline to last year’s 6-2, 6-1 looks possible, given that this will be Bedene’s eighth match of the week – and yesterday’s win over Roberto Bautista-Agut was a tough and long one.
Stan has seen off all comers in Chennai this week with the kind of tennis that brought him the Australian Open crown a year ago and it’s a big ask for Bedene after his long week to come up with another great victory.
Bedene has had problems with his wrist in recent times and coming through qualies to make his first ATP Tour final has made this a special week for the man who is awaiting British citizenship and potentially a place in the GB Davis Cup team.
For now though Bedene will shoot from the hip as he has all week and he did beat Wawrinka here two years ago, but a repeat seems unlikely in the circumstances and I think the layers have this one not too far off, with Wawrinka a little short, but highly likely to win.
Sure thing: Back Federer –1.5 games to beat Raonic at 1.38
Long shot: Back Federer –4.5 games to beat Raonic at 3.30