The unseasonal weather in Toronto continued on Friday, but our wagers brightened things up with three winners yesterday. The Rogers Cup got back on track as the rain abated for long enough to allow both the last 16 and the quarter-finals to be played and it was an excellent day’s betting.
Marcel Granollers easily beat Jeremy Chardy, while Janko Tipsarevic brushed aside Marin Cilic – both at very nice prices. John Isner and Phillip Kohlschreiber, meanwhile, went well past the overs mark for another successful bet. Juan Monaco almost made it a clean sweep, and would have been a great bet for in-play backers: the Argentine took the opening set against Mardy Fish before falling in the decider.
Tipsarevic meets Novak Djokovic on Stadium Court at 11.30 pm UK time, in what could be a more competitive encounter than the odds suggest. Both players will be highly motivated for what will be their seventh meeting, with Djokovic looking to make a statement ahead of the US Open by grabbing his 11th Masters 1000 title and Tipsarevic looking for his first.
Tipsy reached the last four in the Masters 1000 event on the blue clay of Madrid this season before running into an in-form Roger Federer and he’s been the most impressive player I’ve seen in Toronto this week. He’s also won two of his last three matches against his pal Djokovic and he certainly has a shot at this at a very tempting price of around 5.40.
The world number nine knows that if he can get by Djokovic today, he’ll have a 50/50 chance of landing a Masters 1000 title, which is realistically the biggest singles prize he’s likely to win in the sport. He didn’t waste too much energy yesterday by defeating Granollers and Cilic comfortably and he hasn’t dropped a set yet in the tournament.
Djokovic hasn’t been that convincing to me so far this week and he’s certainly not at the level we saw last year, so I’m happy to take Tipsarevic in this match with a 1.5 set start at a price of 2.65.
In the other semi-final, which begins at 8pm UK time this evening, Isner is favourite to make his second Masters 1000 final at a price of 1.75 against Gasquet. The Frenchman took full advantage of a jaded Fish in their quarter-final last night, but the Gasman doesn’t strike me as the likely winner of this clash.
He reached the final here in 2006 (lost to Federer), but this is his first Masters 1000 semi final on a hard court since Paris indoors in 2007 and I don’t see him having the belief or the mental strength to hang in when Isner’s serve flies past him time after time. His record in hard court semi-finals is also very poor.
Overs is usually a good bet in any match involving Isner, but I don’t trust Gasquet not to fold if he loses the first set without creating any break points and it looks a better play to take Isner outright at that 1.75.
Back Tipsarevic +1.5 sets to beat Djokovic at 2.65
Back Isner to beat Gasquet at 1.75