The big names enter the fray in week 42’s ATP 250 tournaments on Thursday, with Andy Murray, Tomas Berdych and David Ferrer all in action today.
All three are trying to seal their places at the year-end tournament in London next month with strong performances in the coming weeks and of the three it would appear that Murray has the toughest task today.
Murray faces Vasek Pospisil at around 17:30 UK time in Vienna and having stated that he thinks the court there is fast he may not have things all his own way against the Canadian and the over 21.5 total games may be a decent choice there at 1.94.
Yesterday’s ATP wagers went one from two, with Andreas Seppi saving numerous set points in the opener against Ivan Dodig before coming away with a straight sets win.
Christian Lindell was competitive against Dustin Brown and was just two points away from taking set two before it went all the way to a tie break,
There are several possible opportunities in today’s 15 matches and it’s been tricky to narrow it down, but I think there is some value in siding with the underdog in the 14:00 UK time clash in Vienna.
Thomaz Bellucci vs Feliciano Lopez
This battle of the lefties may well prove to be a decent opportunity to back Bellucci, who’s been steadily coming back to some form and has played a lot of indoor tennis over the last month or so.
The Brazilian, who has shown a liking for quicker surfaces on the clay, made the final of the Orleans Challenger in week 39 and has beaten Paul-Henri Mathieu twice in the last fortnight.
Perhaps not stunning form, but it could be enough for him to at least get off to a good start against Lopez, who was creaking through the last stages of his Asian campaign and may well be below par here.
Lopez hasn’t played a match on an indoor hard court since week seven and despite being handed a nice late start to his Vienna campaign it may not be enough to prevent Bellucci starting strongly at least.
Bellucci came out on top the last time that this pair met, which was at altitude on clay in Gstaad two year ago and the Brazilian is no mug when it comes to getting results indoors.
A former finalist in Moscow and semi finalist in Stockholm he has wins over the likes of John Isner, Ivo Karlovic, Jerzy Janowicz, and Philipp Kohlschreiber on indoor hard, so beating Lopez would hardly be a shock.
The 2.18 about him winning set one looks decent here, with Bellucci not one to rely on to hang on to a lead, although that has come in from 2.30 overnight.
In Moscow I could make a case for many of the underdogs today and I think the best of these could be Filip Krajinovic.
Tommy Robredo vs Filip Krajinovic
The very slow conditions suit the Serbian prospect, as he showed the other day by landing a nice winner for us over Malek Jaziri and with Robredo suffering from a foot injury there’s enough reason to back him at a tempting 3.25 in this 11:30 UK time start.
Robredo was hardly convincing against the world number 263 Pedja Krstin in round one and the end of a long season is certainly in sight for the Spaniard, who will most likely be putting a bit more of a shift in over in Valencia next week.
His late season efforts aren’t generally the best and playing here for the first time in 12 years it seems unlikely that Moscow is high on his list of goals for this season.
Krajinovic should be much hungrier and a win here will secure his place in the top-100 next week.
Mikhail Youzhny also looks too short against Juan Monaco, who, despite taking a MTO for a neck problem against Paulo Lorenzi, seems sure to give the Russian a decent test in these slow conditions.
Ernests Gulbis has also been suffering with injury – this time to his shoulder – and unless that’s healed since last week I wouldn’t be going anywhere the short price on the Latvian today against Daniel Gimeno Traver.
The Spaniard can play in these paceless indoor conditions and I wouldn’t count him or Fabio Fognini out as underdogs today.
Fogna was last seen flipping the bird as he walked off court in Shanghai, having lost to world number 500+ Chuhan Wang, but wouldn’t it be just like Fabio to come back and win as underdog today?
In Vienna Lukas Rosol looks a lively outsider against Viktor Troicki, who must be exhausted by now, and Jeremy Chardy is another betting outsider who could find success today – in Stockholm against Jack Sock.
Back Bellucci to win set one vs Lopez at 2.18
Back Krajinovic to beat Robredo at 3.25