Aus Open – Day 3

Multi: Dimitrov/Raonic/Auger-Aliassime/Carreno-Busta
Odds of $1.84

Yesterday’s downer means we’re back at 1-1 for the multi’s on the tournament. I’m following the exact same criteria today, opting for a 4-legger that pays out $1.84.

All four of these players are priced very similarly, all between $1.15 and $1.18. We did see a couple of upsets yesterday, but favourites have generally done their thing so far, as you’d expect.

Each of these four are top players that have either previously been or currently are in the world top 20. They are all significantly stronger than their opponents and have proven to be reliable hardcourt players. I’m trusting the numbers here for what looks to be a solid $1.84 payout.

Nick Kyrgios vs Ugo Humbert, 7 pm
Kyrgios $1.85

The early money has been coming in on Kyrgios here, and I like the $1.85 straight up while you can get it. At 80% of his best, Kyrgios is the better player here and the match ultimately rests on his racket.

Humbert is a solid opponent and has strung a few good years together, earning him the #29 seed here. His performances at grand slam level haven’t been anything special, going just 5-8 straight up and 0-2 at the Australian Open.

The obvious question here is whether Kyrgios is anything close to his best. Despite facing some tough draws over the years, he has a very strong 15-7 straight up record at the Aus Open, his best in any grand slam.

The conditions suit his game perfectly and having at least some fans on his side is a clear advantage. I’m not expecting it to be pretty, but I think he does enough to get the win here.

Aus Open – Day 2

Multi: Struff/Coric/Hurkacz/Berankis
Combined Odds of $1.80

A punting rite of passage is getting on the favourites in the first week of the Australian Open. We’re continuing the trend here, again going with four favourites in that elusive $1.11 to $1.20 range.

Struff and Coric are the ‘big earners’ at $1.20 and $1.17 respectively, with Berankis and Hurkacz slightly lower at $1.14 and $1.13. Based on recent results, each of these men has close to a 90% chance of winning.

From a pure mathematical perspective, this means we’re getting a 66% bet at very solid odds of $1.80. The favourites had a predictably good day yesterday and I’m expecting more of the same here.

Thanasi Kokkinakis vs Soon Woo Kwon, 6:15 pm
Kokkinakis $1.70

I’m going to take Kokkinakis to win straight up here, currently paying $1.70 against the young Korean. Kokkinakis has flashed a ton of potential in recent years, but his inability to stay healthy was always his achilles heel.

He’s had plenty of time to rest up and work on his game and is playing on very familiar soil. The crowd won’t be the same as previous years, but it’s still a notable advantage that should help Kokkinakis here.

Kokkinakis also has a significant serve and power advantage over his opponent, which should provide dividends on a hard-court surface. Kwon likely won’t have played in such a hostile atmosphere before and could easily get into an early hole. The model I use gives Kokkinakis a 66% chance at the win here, meaning this is a plus EV bet.

Aus Open – Day 1

Multi: Fritz, Fucsovics, Humbert, Kyrgios
Combined Odds of $1.70

Looking back at some recent Aus Open data, favourites between $1.11 and $1.2 have been plus EV for bettors. At an average start price of $1.15, they’ve won just over 90% of matches over the past 8 years.

I’m opting for four such favourites here, all between $1.13 and $1.17, giving us a payout of $1.70. I wouldn’t classify any of these as ‘sure things’, but most will win this type of match about 90% of the time.

A 5-set tennis match weights itself heavily towards the favourite, which is why we tend to see much fewer upsets on the ATP side. The lengthy quarantine throws a potential spanner in the works, but these are professional athletes that I trust to remain in top shape.

Grigor Dimitrov vs Marin Cilic, 4:15 pm
Over 39.5 Games

This looks like one of the premier matchups on day 1, between two men that have previously made Aus Open Finals. I’m opting for a total play here, going over 39.5 sets for the match.

Both of these men are elite level servers and have consistently held above 85% of the time on hard court. They are also both prone to tie-breaks, which further helps our chance at the over.

The odds aren’t too far apart either, with Dimitrov at $1.65 and Cilic out at $2.20. This implies that the most likely outcomes are Dimitrov in either 4 or 5 sets. If we get 4 sets with at least 1 tie-break, it’s hard to imagine we don’t get 50 games.

French Open – Men’s Final

Novak Djokovic vs Rafael Nadal, 12:15 am
Nadal to Win $1.67

It’s very rare that you’ll get Rafael Nadal as a $1.67 favourite in a French Open match, yet that’s the situation presented to us here.

I’m tipping Nadal to win this one outright at $1.67, with a little extra on the 3-1 set market at $4.40 for some additional value.

Nadal looks like he hasn’t missed a beat after the long lay-off, winning all 18 of his sets en route to the final.

He looked especially impressive in the semis, taking care of a surging Diego Schwartzman with relative ease.

Although he deserves a ton of credit for making the final, Novak just hasn’t been as convincing during his wins.

He was pushed to a tough 4-setter by Carreno Busta in the quarters and had to go the full 5 sets against Tsitsipas in the semis.

Nadal is a major step up on both of these opponents on clay and I’m not sure the Novak serve can hold up here.

These two have faced off twice in the French Open Final before, with Nadal winning comfortably in 4 on both occasions.

He’s playing as well as he ever has, while Novak just isn’t quite 100%, and I’m expecting the same outcome in their third final here.

French Open – Women’s Final

Iga Swiatek vs Sofia Kenin, 12 am
Over 20.5 Games

While this doesn’t feature the top-end talent, it does shape up as a very competitive final that could go either way.

With that in mind, I’m leaning towards over 20.5 games in what I expect to be a tightly contested affair.

These two have a combined age of just 40, making it one of the youngest grand slam finals in history.

Both have really come into their own of late, with this being Swiatek’s first time past the fourth round and the 2nd time for reining Aus Open champion Kenin.

I think their relative inexperience will show through here, with both players making mistakes that reduce the chance of a blowout.

Swiatek has absolutely dominant en route to this point, while Kenin has played 5 very competitive matches so far.

Swiatek is probably the rightful favourite given the form she’s in, but Kenin’s fighting spirit should keep this close and competitive.

A 3-setter all but guarantees that we hit this over, but we should still get there with a competitive 2-setter.

I can see something like 7-5 6-4 playing out either way given how close they rate out, which would put us in the money.

French Open – Men’s Semi Finals

Rafael Nadal vs Diego Schwartzman, 12:05 am
Nadal 3-0 $1.95

I’m backing Nadal to win in straight sets here, currently on offer at $1.95.

Diego Schwartzman is in incredible form right now, but you’d be a brave man to bet against Nadal here.

He has been absolutely dominant en route to the semis, winning 15 straight sets and only facing one tie-break.

His usually strong return game goes up another level on clay and I’d expect him to really dominate the Schwartzman serve here.

His hold percentage is also incredibly good considering the conditions, having only been broken 4 times all tournament.

This has been a career-best run for Schwartzman, who was only 9-6 at Roland Garros for his carer before this tournament.

He did have a big 5-set win over Dominic Thiem last time out, but I think that’ll leave him fatigued here.

If Nadal can start well here, I think he goes on to win in straights.

Novak Djokovic vs Stefanos Tsitsipas, 3:15 am
Djokovic -1.5 Sets

This shapes up as another cracking semi-final, one where I like the look of Novak -1.5 sets.

After all the mess surrounding the US Open, Novak has sauntered to the semis here, dropping only 1 set in the process.

His match against Carreno-Busta was a good warm-up for this one and I’d expect him to start fast here.

Tsitsipas has also been quite impressive in his last couple of matches, taking care of seeds Dimitrov and Rublev in straight sets.

Novak is obviously the more experienced of these two and I’d expect that to play a major role here.

I’ve got no doubt that he wants a shot at another French Open crown and I’m expecting him to come out all guns blazing.

Novak at his best wins this in 4 or less sets, regardless of how well Tsitsipas plays.

French Open – Women’s Semi Finals

Multi: Swiatek/Kvitova
Combined Odds of $1.91

We’ve got the two French Open women’s semi finals overnight and I’m going for the straightforward play of the two favourites together at $1.91.

First up, we’ve got Iga Swiatek, the 19-year-old Pole who is a $1.25 favourite against Nadia Podoroska.

Swiatek has won all 10 of her sets en route to the semis and has not been taken to a tie-break or 7-5 once all tournament.

She managed to beat some competent players along the way, taking care of #15 seed Vondrousova, fan-favourite Bouchard, and #1 seed Halep with relative ease.

There is the potential of nerves in her first senior grand slam semi, but I can’t look past her here on current form.

We’ve then got #7 seed Petra Kvitova, who is a $1.53 favourite over the #4 seed Sofia Kenin.

Petra is another player who has absolutely breezed to this point, yet to drop a set thus far.

She takes on reigning Aus Open champ Sofia Kenin, who has had a relatively tough slog to reach the semis.

While Petra much prefers to play on grass, her serve has held up very well all tournament, which I’d expect to continue here.

On the flipside, Kenin has given up a relatively high break percentage, which I think Petra can exploit here.

Paying essentially the same as a regular handicap line, I’ll take the two favourites combined at $1.91.

French Open – Day 12

Andrey Rublev vs Stefanos Tsitsipas, 1:15 am
Over 39.5 Games

I’m expecting a very competitive match between these two and I lean towards the over, currently set at 39.5 games.

These two actually played on clay last month, with Rublev taking a very close 3-setter 6-4 3-6 7-5.

Both of these men have shown resiliency when down a set or two before and I wouldn’t expect a blowout either way.

Rublev in particular has played some very close sets to this point, with 7 of his 16 sets going to at least 7-5.

Tsitsipas is the rightful favourite on paper, but the conditions should hamper his usually very effective serve.

At the current 39.5 number, we generally need 4 sets and at least 1 tie-break to occur.

Given the track record these two have, I think that’s a relatively good bet at near even money.

Novak Djokovic vs Pablo Carreno-Busta, 4:15 am
Djokovic 3-0 $1.60

This is a pure value play, where I’m going to take Novak winning 3-0 at $1.60 odds.

Considering he is an emphatic $1.05 outright favourite, I think there’s some definite line value in this number.

Rafa Nadal was also a $1.05 favourite just yesterday and his price to win 3-0 was a mere $1.36.

Novak has been in exquisite form through his first four matches, comfortably winning all 12 of his sets thus far.

He hasn’t been taken to a tie-break or even a 7-5 in any set he’s played, including in his demolition of #15 seed Khachanov last time out.

Carreno Busta is still a very capable player and probably the best one Novak has faced this tournament, yet he still can’t match Novak’s level on clay.

He gave up a ton of break points against Bautista Agut in round 3 and I’d expect him to really struggle on serve here.

Should Novak continue to limit opponent break opportunities, a 3-0 win looks likely here.

French Open – Day 11

Multi: Thiem/Nadal 3-0
Combined Odds of $1.95

Relatively slim pickings on today’s card, so I’m opting for a 2-leg multi featuring two of the game’s best.

To start with, we’ve got a cracking match between Dominic Thiem and Diego Schwartzman.

Thiem is currently favoured to win outright at $1.44 and I’m expecting him to get the job done here.

He is in career-best form and has only dropped two sets in 4 matches, despite facing a relatively tough schedule.

Schwartzman has had a very kind run to the quarters and Thiem will be a noticeable step up in opponent quality.

Over the best-of-5 sets, Thiem’s superior all-round game should be enough to get the job done.

The second leg of this multi will be Nadal winning 3-0 against Sinner, currently paying out $1.36.

Nadal has looked in exquisite form throughout this tournament, yet to drop a set or be taken to a tie-break.

He has seemingly mastered the art of serving on clay and is converting his plentiful break opportunities at a great clip.

Sinner doesn’t have a whole lot of professional experience and was only 1-3 in grand slams for his career before this tournament.

While he managed a win over an injured Zverev last time out, Nadal is too much of a step up in quality here.

At $1.95, these two men look like the most reliable options on the board today.

French Open – Day 10

Grigor Dimitrov vs Stefanos Tsitsipas, 10:15 pm
Dimitrov +5.5 Games

This has the makings of a very close and competitive match, one which I’d expect to be tighter than the odds suggest.

I think these two are fairly comparable players and will take Dimitrov at the +5.5-game handicap.

He hasn’t really faced a high level of competition, but he’s looked very good so far and won all 8 of the sets he’s played.

His serve has held up very well in these conditions and he’s creating a ton of break opportunities for himself.

Whilst Tsitsipas has won his last two matches comfortably, he really struggled to win in 5 in round 1.

Clay definitely isn’t his preferred surface and he entered this tournament with a 4-3 record at Roland Garros.

I also consider Dimitrov to be a big game player, someone who really brings it when he faces top opposition.

I’m not sure he claims the outright win, but I think he’s competitive enough to cover the generous +5.5 handicap.

Ons Jabeur vs Danielle Collins, 11:15 pm
Over 20.5 Games

This is similar to last night’s play, where I’m going to take over 20.5 games between these two ladies.

The #30 seed Jabeur has done well to reach the fourth round, but she’s played in some very competitive matches so far.

She’s played in two tense 3-setters and one competitive 2-setter, all of which have easily gone over 20.5 games.

Likewise for Danielle Collins, who has also played two very tense 3-setters, including her upset win of Muguruza last time out.

Both of these players are relatively inconsistent, losing and then regaining momentum at regular intervals.

I think there will be a fair few breaks of serve in this one and we’re unlikely to see any blowout sets.

Jabeur is prone to tie-breaks and I think there’s a good chance we see a 7-5 or 7-6 set here.

If we get 3 sets, this is essentially a lock to go over, but two competitive sets should also see us get there.