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  • Chris Sobey

Tennis


A quick recap of last week’s ATP tennis action and unfortunately it was close but no cigar again as only one of my eight elections Rublev (40/1 final result tbc) made it through to his respective final at Umag. NextGen star Rublev's run to his first ever ATP final at the fledgling age of 19 was a big surprise as he lost in the final round of qualifying and only received a main draw spot as a Lucky Loser due to another player withdrawing pre-tournament.

However, this is where my expertise as a tennis analyst comes in as very few people would have backed Rublev after losing in qualifying however, it is not uncommon for players like this to spring surprises at big odds, whether its winning a few main draw matches at big odds or going all the way to the final as they have a nothing to lose attitude.

It is rare for a lucky loser to win a professional tennis tournament however, there have been a few in the modern era to win and reach the finals. Sergiy Stakhovsky in 2008 in Zagreb and Rajeev Ram in 2009 in Newport both won and finalists include Andreas Haider-Maurer, who reached the final in 2010 Vienna before losing to top-seed Jürgen Melzer and Marcel Granollers lost against David Ferrer in 2010 Valencia.

On to this week’s ATP tennis action and it’s a busy week again with three tournaments, including the prestigious ATP 500 clay court event at Hamburg, another clay court event in the beautiful town of Gstaad in the Swiss Alps and the start of the USA hard court swing that leads up to the US Open at Atlanta. I’ll take a break from tipping this week having picked at least a 20/1 winner with Rublev last week, but I’ll provide analysis for each tournament still, which is useful for betting purposes.

Hamburg has been won mainly by European players over the last decade, with a couple of South American players breaking the trend in 2012 and 2014, and it takes a seasoned clay court pro to win the title usually someone ranked inside the top-50. The top two seeds don’t have a great record at Hamburg and the top-seed has won two of the last ten titles (last Nadal 2015) and they were a losing finalist twice in this period (last Ferrer 2014), which does not bode well for Ramos-Vinolas chances this week. The second seed has won two of the last ten titles (last Davydenko 2009) and they were a losing finalist once in this period (last Nadal 2007), which does not bode well for Cuevas’s chances this week.

Seeded players in general do have a strong record at Hamburg and a player seeded no higher than 12 has won eight of the last ten titles (last Klizan 7 2016) and a player seeded no higher than 13 was a losing finalist eight times during this period (last Cuevas 3 2016). Unseeded players don’t have a great record at Hamburg over the last decade only winning the title twice (last F Mayer 2014) and an unseeded player was a losing finalist twice during this period (last Delbonis 2013).

The Swiss Open in Gstaad is played at altitude and judging by past winners it takes an experienced clay courter to be able to handle the quicker conditions. The top-two seeds have a poor record at Gstaad and the top-seed won one of the last ten titles (last Lopez 2016) and they were a losing finalist twice during this period (last Goffin 2015), which does not bode well for top-seed Goffin’s chances this week. The second seed’s record is even worse and they won the title once over the last decade (last Almagro 2010) and they were never a losing finalist during this period, which does not bode well for Bautista Aguts chances this week.

Seeded players in general have a good record at Gstaad over the last record and a player seeded no higher than eight won six of the last ten titles (last Lopez 2016) and a player seeded no higher than seven was a losing finalist five times during this period (last Lopez 2015). Unseeded players have a decent record at Gstaad winning four of the last ten titles (last Andujar 2014) and they were a losing finalist four times during this period (last Monaco 2014).

Atlanta is a newer tournament and has been running for the last seven seasons. American player have dominated the title winning six of the last seven and Australian Kyrgios upset the trend last year beating three time winner and defending champion Isner in the final. The top two seeds have an average record at Atlanta and the top-seed has won one of the last seven tiles (last Isner 2015) and they were a losing finalist once during this period (last Isner 2016). The second seed won one of the last ten titles (last Kyrgios 2016) and they were a losing finalist twice during this period (last Bedych 2012).

Seeded players in general have a very strong record and a player seeded no higher than nine would the last seven titles and a player seeded no higher than 15 was a losing finalist five times during this period (last Kyrgios 2016). An unseeded player has never won the title and they were a losing finalist twice during the last seven seasons (last 2014 Janowicz).


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