Last week on the ATP Tour it was back to the veterans and older more experienced players dominating affairs and at Basel Federer (advised 13/5) thrilled his home fans by winning a record ninth Basel title, defeating qualifier Copil in the final. Also, the 500 points put him right bang in the middle of the race to end the season as the world number one which spices up the ATP Finals that little bit more next month. At Vienna seeded players dominated the final and second seed Anderson defeated fifth seed Nishikori in straight sets. This was the second time this season Anderson beat Nishikori in a final after he beat at him New York indoors earlier in the season. Prior to this season Anderson had never beaten Nishikori losing four in a row, which shows how much the giant South African has improved over the past two years, and this win also meant he’s qualified for his first ever year-end ATP Tour finals next month.
On to this week’s ATP action and it’s the final ATP and ATP Masters 1000 Series Tournament of the season at Paris and the stakes are high this week as the there’s a potential battle royal on for the ATP World Number One Ranking between current number one Nadal, who has been resting due to injury and has not played competitively since the US Open, and a resurgent and arguably the best player on tour at present, four time Paris winner and world number two Djokovic. The past statistics for tournament winners and finalists over the last decade don’t read well for the top two seeds as the top seed won two of the last ten titles (last Djokovic 2015) and was never a losing finalist and the second seed has won two of the last ten titles (last Murray 2016) and they were a losing finalist once during this period (Murray 2015).
Seeded players in general have a strong record at Paris and a player seeded no higher than sixteen won the last ten titles (last 2017 Sock) and a player seeded no higher than fifteen was a losing finalist seven times during this period (last 2015 Murray). Unseeded players have an average record at Paris over the last decade. They’ve never won the title during this period, but they did feature in three finals including two qualifiers and the last two seasons.
From a tournament betting perspective, I’ll keep it simple today. I can’t see past second seed Djokovic (7/5) winning this week given his current form and record at Paris. From the top half of the draw eighth seed Isner (50/1) seems to like it in Paris having a winning overall match record and he reached the final in 2016, the conditions clearly suit his type of game and he’s been in great form this year and still has an outside chance of qualifying for the ATP Tour year-end finals in London that begin on 11th November, but he would probably need to at least reach the final to achieve this. As unseeded players, especially qualifiers, have done well in recent years it’s worth highlighting a couple that could go well this week, cause a few upsets and potentially reach the latter stages at the weekend.
From this year’s qualifiers veteran Lopez (125/1) could go well as the conditions suit his game, he’s vastly experienced and difficult to break if his serve is firing. which it looks to be after the manner of his qualifying wins and hopefully the momentum of a couple of confident wins in qualifying will fire him up to perform at his best this week. He’s unfortunately in the same quarter as Isner but I do think its worth taking on Nadal due to his injury problems and two chances is of course better than one. If you can’t find outright tournament winner odds for Lopez you can request them from any bookmaker who provides an outright winner market.
From a first round match betting perspective I like veteran Chardy’s chances to beat Vienna semi-finalist as he leads the head-to-head 3-1 and should be spurred on by home support enough to extend his winning record to 4-1. I also like veteran Simon’s chances to beat out of sorts compatriot Pouille as he’s been in much better form than Pouille this year and his vast experience should give him an edge and see him through to the second round.
Djokovic Win (7/5)
Isner EW (50/1)
Lopez WIN (125/1)
Chardy Win vs Verdasco
Simon Win v vs Pouille