Tuesday’s play in week one’s three ATP 250 tournaments sees 27 matches on the cards in Brisbane, Doha and Chennai on a busy day of tennis action.
Novak Djokovic, Rafa Nadal, Tomas Berdych and David Ferrer all make their main tournament debuts of the season on Tuesday along with plenty of other big names.
Monday’s good thing of Jeremy Chardy provided a solid and comfortable winner in Brisbane, while at the same venue my long shot of Thanasi Kokkinakis beating Julien Benneteau 2-1 was unlucky, as the Aussie teen got the job done in straight sets instead.
Then, my final wager of the day was successful when Lukas Rosol and Ivo Karlovic took their first set to a tie break and over the 10.5 total games mark for a 2.05 winner in Doha.
There isn’t too much to get excited about from a betting perspective over in Brisbane overnight, but there could be some play in siding with big-serving and motivated Sam Groth against Lleyton Hewitt in the 10:00 UK time match.
Hewitt is still able to produce top quality at times, but he’s much too inconsistent these days to be a good bet at a price like 1.39 against the dangerous Groth.
Ricardas Berankis vs Luca Vanni
Lithuanian baseliner Berankis has always been a talent, but he’s never really managed to get the best out of himself, but he should be too much for Vanni, who’s a Futures and Challengers level player.
At 29 years of age Vanni has made it through qualifying to make his first ever ATP World Tour main draw and he did it by beating the unranked Raswant Ravi, before defeating fellow Italian Thomas Fabbiano and finally Damir Dzumhur.
That win over 104 ranked Dzumhur was perhaps the best of his career, as his six clashes with top-100 opposition have all ended in defeat for Vanni, which highlights his general level.
Berankis is a streaky sort, who does have peaks and troughs of form, but he should be confident here after ending last season on a high with a Challenger title.
The world number 83 spent the pre-season at a training camp in Doha, where he should have been able to acclimatise to the heat he’ll encounter in Chennai.
Opening matches of the year are always tricky, but Berankis couldn’t have hoped for a much better round one draw and should win at 1.34.
There are plenty of contenders for a long shot wager on Tuesday’s card and possibles include Elias Ymer against Igor Sijsling in Chennai and Somdev Devvarman over Yen-Hsun Lu at the same venue.
Novak Djokovic has been suffering with sickness and may not be fully fit against compatriot Dusan Lajovic, but it’s a bit of guesswork as to how ready Novak is for that one.
Thiemo De Bakker could serve his way to a decent showing against David Ferrer in Doha if he’s on one of his good days, but I prefer an outsider in an all-German affair.
Philipp Kohlschreiber vs Jan-Lennard Struff
Kohlschreiber has a very mediocre record in Doha, where he’s failed to make it past the quarter finals in seven attempts so far in his career and he could be vulnerable to big-hitting Struff in this 14:00 UK time start.
The higher ranked German will want to forget his last meet with Struff when Kohlschreiber limped out of the match at 0-5 down indoors in Metz last September and Struff could have success in these quick conditions.
Kohlschreiber tends to play better in Auckland in week two of the campaign (although this year he’s down to play Sydney instead) and Struff, who has been working on fitness, along with his serve and net approaches, could catch Kohli cold here.
My final bet of the day was a choice between backing Blaz Kavcic, Lukas Lacko and Andreas Seppi, who all look decent options at backable prices, but I’ll plump for the former.
Blaz Kavcic vs Juan Monaco
This early-season hard court swing has paid little dividends for Pico over the year and it’s rare that the Argentine plays a main tour event prior to the Australian Open these days.
The last time that Monaco graced an ATP World Tour tournament prior to Melbourne was in Auckland back in 2011 and he hasn’t played in week one since way back in 2006 when he lost to Flo Mayer in Adelaide.
Monaco struggled with injury last season and he looks a shaky favourite against the game Kavcic, who has the benefit of having played three matches in Doha already this week in qualifying after spending pre-season training in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
That hard work and compliance with the conditions could pay off for Kavcic against Monaco, who has never played in this part of the world and has lost 12 of his last 17 on outdoor hard against top-100 opponents, which Kavcic will rejoin should he win this match.
Sure thing: Back Berankis to beat Vanni at 1.34
Long shot: Back Struff to beat Kohlschreiber at 3.05
Value bet: Back Kavcic to beat Monaco at 1.98