Monday was another excellent one for betting with both of my advised wagers winning comfortably in Paris.
David Ferrer wasn’t put off by the ridiculous grunting from Marcel Granollers and he eased over the 9.5 game handicap margin in the process of handing out a thrashing to his Davis Cup team mate.
At the same time another Spaniard was enjoying himself as Nicolas Almagro took out Janko Tipsarevic in an emphatic straight sets win, which sets us up nicely for the rest of the week.
Today sees the start of the quarter-finals and it’s a fantastic lineup for tennis fans as Roger Federer takes on Juan Martin Del Potro and Novak Djokovic faces Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Looking at Djokovic vs Tsonga first, on the face of the head-to-head you would give the Frenchman a decent chance, as he has beaten 'Nole' five times, but most of those were a long time ago now. And they also took place on hard-courts, as opposed to the slow clay conditions that the players will encounter today.
Tsonga’s serve has been far too easy for players to break this week – a case in point being the six times he was broken by Stan Wawrinka and the Swiss created 17 break point opportunities in that match.
Tsonga won’t be beating Djokovic today if he can’t hold on to his serve and their last meeting on clay in similar conditions in Rome gives us the best clue to this match.
The world number one broke Tsonga five times in two sets and although he hasn’t been impressive so far in this tournament and was made to struggle by Andreas Seppi in the previous round I expect a performance from Djokovic today.
There’s no value in backing him outright, but I think he’ll get the job done in less than 172.5 minutes and that’s my bet at a price of 1.87.
Federer against Del Potro should also go to form, with this match likely to be a real struggle for the big Argentine, who has been suffering with a knee injury all tournament.
Del Potro is at his happiest when he gets into a rhythm from balls being hit at a regular pace, such as against an opponent like Tomas Berdych, and he can bang them back and make the match a battle of who can hit the hardest.
He doesn’t get that from Federer, who learned from his 2009 US Open defeat to 'Delpo' and now feeds him all sorts of slices and drop shots, mixing up the pace and pushing him into places that Delpo doesn’t like to go.
Federer has an outstanding record in quarter finals and in the last five Grand Slam quarter-finals that he’s won, the Swiss maestro has won them in straight sets.
Despite not impressing this week and dropping sets against players that you wouldn’t expect him to, I can see Federer raising the standard today and coming through fairly comfortably.
Delpo hasn’t taken a set from Federer since 2009 and although it could be argued that they’ve all been played on surfaces favouring Federer, I wouldn’t say that Delpo was more effective on clay than hard by any means.
There’s a few bets to consider in this one and the 1.52 about Federer winning minus 1.5 sets looks pretty good to me, but I’ll take a bit more of a risk and back the unders on the total games market instead.
I can’t see Delpo having enough with a bad knee to force Federer to play more than 39.5 games today, so the 1.93 about this match finishing in less than that mark has to be the bet.
Best Bets: Back under 172.5 minutes in Djokovic v Tsonga at 1.87 Back under 39.5 games in Federer v Del Potro at 1.93