The final matches in the men’s third round at the 2014 US Open are the order of the day on Sunday, with thunderstorms threatening to disrupt play today.
Forecasters have predicted that the Flushing area will be affected by rain and thunder from around 14:00 local time, but all day it’s set to be very hot and extremely humid, which will make for tough conditions.
The weather is one thing that Leo Mayer can’t hang his hat on after a feeble display in defeat to Kei Nishikori on Saturday, with the Japanese star not looking comfortable towards the end.
Indeed, had Mayer been at the races he could have made it interesting had he taken a third set that he was in control of at one stage.
But profit was secured on the day when Philipp Kohlschreiber took down John Isner for the third straight year at odds-against, with the German winning all three tie breaks in a four set battle in which Isner was never broken.
We begin, as usual, at 16:00 UK time on Sunday and the first singles match on Grandstand from 17:00 is where my first bet of the day can be found.
Marin Cilic vs Kevin Anderson
This big-hitting battle is likely to go the way of Cilic and with Anderson having been extended far more than the Croatian so far this fortnight the South African may well fade late on here.
Cilic played only 13 games against Marcos Baghdatis in round one and 31 against Illya Marchenko, so he comes here having played 43 games to Anderson’s 90.
Kevin has been struggling with elbow and knee problems lately and as much as I admire his attitude and the way he’s worked on his game to find ways to improve he seems to have reached his best level.
He was a little flattered by the scoreline in the second round win over Jerzy Janowicz, who was awful after going a set ahead, and his record against Cilic is far from inspiring either.
Cilic leads that career series 4-1, with Anderson’s only win coming on clay in Rome last year and their one meeting in 2014 was in the final of Delray Beach on a hard court back in week eight.
Marin always appeared the likely winner of that one and he should be able to cover a minus 2.5 game handicap today, while the 3-1 to Cilic also appeals at 4.10.
Feliciano Lopez vs Dominic Thiem
After a very tough, long season I’m not too sure how much Thiem has left in the tank and we’ll certainly find out today in these hot and humid conditions.
The Austrian was being fairly readily dealt with by stable mate Ernests Gulbis in the last round before Ernie injured himself and I would expect Lopez to have a little bit too much for the youngster today.
This one is scheduled for straight after the Cilic match on Grandstand, where Lopez was just able to take advantage of an injured opponent in the fifth in Ivan Dodig in round one, so both players have had a touch of fortune this week so far.
I’m yet to be convinced by Thiem away from clay and I get the impression that these quick conditions, a tricky, experienced leftie with a great serve, and accumulated fatigue will be the undoing of the Austrian here.
Lopez hasn’t exactly been convincing this fortnight so far, which makes the handicaps a little risky and the 1.57 on Lopez isn’t fabulous but it should work out.
Back Cilic to beat Anderson –2.5 games at 1.63
Back Lopez to beat Thiem at 1.57