It’s semi-finals day at the Geneva and Lyon ATP Tournaments and starting with Geneva Jarry (advised 22/1) is through to the semi-finals and faces fifth seed Albot for the first time. Albot has been in better form this year, is more experienced having won his first ATP Tournament at Delray Beach earlier this year on hard courts and like Jarry the quicker conditions due to the altitude at Geneva clearly play to both players strengths. If you’ve backed Jarry for the tournament outright you can consider backing Albot to at least cover your outright stake as the layers make him the marginal favourite.
Ominously for the remaining players at Geneva top-seed Zverev is still on course to justify favouritism and win the title. He’s due to face Delbonis for the first time in today’s semi-finals and while he’s the clear favourite to progress to the final he will need to improve on his hard fought three set quarter final win against Bolivian Dellien as Delbonis is a proven player on clay at this level having won two ATP 250 clay titles at Marrakech and Sao Paulo and also made two European ATP 250 clay titles at Nice and Hamburg.
At Lyon top seed Basilashvili is still on track to reach tomorrow’s final but he faces one of the best emerging NextGen stars fourth seed Auger-Aliasimme from Canada who beat Basilashvili in there only meeting on the ATP Tour at the Miami Masters 1000 Series this year 7-6 6-4. Finally, the other semi-final is between the one remaining French hope Paire (advised 20/1) who just scraped past NextGen star Shapovalov on a third set tie break yesterday and NextGen star Fritz who knocked out second seed Bautista Agut one of my outright selections in a close three set encounter yesterday.
Paire and Fritz have twice previously on the ATP Tour but never on clay. The head-to-head stands at one all, Paire won the most recent encounter at Stuttgart on grass last year in three sets and if you’ve backed Paire for the tournament I suggest backing Fritz to at least cover your outright stake on Paire.
Also, don’t forget the eagerly awaited second Grand Slam of the season the French Open played on the red dirt at Roland Garros kicks off on Sunday so if you’re a follower of my tennis articles and/or bets I’ll provide my preview of the men’s tournament and any selections on Sunday morning before 10am.
The men’s draw was made yesterday and second seed Nadal who is aiming for a mind boggling twelfth French Open crown looks to have an easier draw as he’s drawn to face qualifiers in the first two rounds and he’s avoided Djokovic and Thiem, who both reside in the top half of the draw. Even with third seed Federer in Nadal’s half of the draw, there doesn’t look like there’s a player good enough on paper or form wise at present to stop him reaching at least the final. However, he was nowhere near his dominant best during this year’s European clay court swing winning only one title the Rome Masters 1000 Series and only time will tell if that’s a positive or negative for the King of Clay.