Day two of week six on the 2016 ATP World Tour features plenty of matches on a busy day across our three tournaments in Rotterdam, Buenos Aires and Memphis.
Denis Istomin was a couple of points away from landing a 2.70 gamble in his Rotterdam clash with Marin Cilic on Monday, but just failed to take a set in the expected competitive encounter against the Croatian.
That was annoying, as the second part of the double was successful, but only after a comically poor affair between a typically chokey Thiemo De Bakker and Borna Coric ended after four of 23 break points were taken and the Dutchman wasted 10 (!) set points in the opener.
But those on the +1.5 sets about headline pick Guido Pella were comfortable winners when Pella took the opener 6-2 against Leo Mayer.
Tuesday looks a day where we’re spoiled for choice for decent value wagers, with plenty of underdogs holding appeal and, for my money, no real certainties, with the possible exception of Philipp Kohlschreiber in Rotterdam.
Tommy Robredo vs Martin Klizan
There were a few matches that caught my eye in terms of value bets for Tuesday in Rotterdam and the short list was actually long, with Andreas Seppi, Gael Monfils, Marcos Baghdatis and Klizan to choose from.
I was eyeing up Klizan outright in Sofia last week at 33-1, but decided against it, and was sweating away as the Slovak progressed through the draw to the semi final stage and led by a set against Viktor Troicki.
Fortunately he didn’t make it, but he has every chance in this 20:00 UK time clash with the veteran Spaniard now that his flagging confidence has been boosted by that run in Sofia.
Robredo doesn’t usually grace us with his presence much at this time of the year and he withdrew from Montpellier’s entry list last week for unspecified reasons and his fitness these days has to be questioned at a few months shy of his 34th birthday.
Tommy has lost his last seven matches against top-50 opposition and indoors he’s been past the quarter final stage only once since 2007.
Klizan defeated the Spaniard in their most recent meeting, which was on clay in Spain at the Barcelona Open last season and Robredo will be lacking familiarity with indoor conditions, having played only one event indoors since the end of 2014.
Conditions in Rotterdam are very similar to Sofia, so Klizan should have the added advantage of having played well on this surface only a matter of days ago.
Marco Cecchinato vs Juan Monaco
It seems a tad premature to be putting Pico in as a 1.53 favourite for this round one clash in Buenos Aires, given that he’s been away from the tour for seven months due to wrist surgery.
Pico said that he could have delayed his comeback for longer, but that he wanted to play here, which is understandable, and he doesn’t sound like he’s got many expectations here.
“I will not force for a win. My greatest victory will be to finish healthy,” he said, but there again he is friends with Rafa “try my best” Nadal, so I’m not taking much from that statement.
It does seem a very skinny price though given that Pico’s last match was a retirement in Kitzbuhel last August.
Cecchinato has qualified in good style here, with two straight sets wins, the latter over another Argentine, Facundo Arguello, who got back into the draw as a lucky loser on Monday when Fernando Verdasco withdrew.
The Italian will surely be in better touch and match fitness and either the outright win at 2.50 or set one win at 2.30 both look good value.
I also expect a decent performance from Federico Delbonis when the Argentine takes on the mercurial Fabio Fognini in Buenos Aires at around 19:00 UK time.
Fogna has found Delbonis a tough opponent in the three matches of their career series so far, with all featuring at least one tie break, and the most recent one in the quarter finals of Rio on the clay a year ago as tight as could be.
Delbonis finally got some wins under his belt in Australia a few weeks ago and with both playing their opening clay matches of the year on Tuesday it’s likely to be a close one again.
At home Delbonis should be motivated and +2.5 games on him looks decent on the handicap at 1.91, as does the over 22.5 games at 1.83.
Another Argentine, Renzo Olivo, also looks a more than viable underdog at around the 2.43 mark against Facundo Bagnis, who seems very short indeed against the in-form Olivo.
I'll go with Klizan today, but Monfils looks good value against Ernests Gulbis, while Baghdatis and Seppi also have chances as underdogs.
Value bet: Back Klizan to beat Robredo at 2.0
Long shot: Back Cecchinato to beat Monaco and Delbonis +2.5 games at 4.78