HUGE day in Paris and Mark Stinchcombe (@markstinchcombe) has four odds-against bets to share.
Serena Williams v Sara Errani | Wednesday 13:00
Let’s make no bones about it. A fully fit at-the-very-top-of-her-game Serena Williams should destroy Sara Errani. There should be no way the little Italian at just 5ft 5in with limited weapons should be able to live with Serena’s power.
Williams has won all eight of their meetings, handing out a bagel in three of the sets. Yet this isn’t the all conquering Williams we all know. She’s started slowly and somewhat bizarrely, in her last three matches dropping the opening set before winning a close 2nd then comfortably coming through the decider. This isn’t a surprise however, with similar previous performances and fitness concerns already alluded to in my outright preview.
Williams and Errani actually met just six weeks ago at the beginning of the clay court season in the Fed Cup in a windy Italy which went exactly the same way as above, with Serena coming through 4-6 7-6 6-3. Williams hit a massive 70 winners in comparison to Errani’s seven but she committed nearly three times as many unforced errors.
Sara again kept the errors to a premium in the previous round against Julia Goerges with just three, while taking her chance when it mattered converting five of her seven break points.
With windy conditions again set to continue, 9/1 is very tempting for Williams to come through the same way for the fourth match running, and again against Errani.
Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal | Wednesday 14:30
This will be the 44th meeting in their careers and seventh at Roland Garros between these two. The area I want to focus on is tie-breaks. Only in nine of their matches have they contested a tie-break (20%). And only in one of their six meetings in Paris have they played a tie-break, that’s just one out of 21 sets.
Both players are equally adept at breaking each other then consolidating the set. Nadal has broken serve 28 times in his four matches and Djokovic isn’t far behind breaking 21 times in a set less.
This price was only 8/13 in Monte Carlo, and with the possibility of only one extra set here (no tie-break in the 5th), this looks a good bet at odds against. Back no tie-break in the match.
Andy Murray v David Ferrer | Wednesday 14:30
As mentioned in Murray’s previous match, he is in the form of his clay court career with 14 straight wins. Murray is 9-6 v Ferrer, however 0-4 on clay, although they have only played here once, with Ferrer coming through in four back in 2012.
Clearly Murray’s game has come on leaps and bounds on the dirt, with him recognising he needs to combine his excellent defence with an aggressive approach, something that’s been evident over the last two months.
However, Ferrer won’t make it easy for him. He impressively dispatched US Open champion Marin Cilic in straight sets and has now won 19 of his 23 clay court matches this year. Ferrer has lost three out of three against the Top 5 though. He’s now 33 and clearly getting on his career.
I like Andy to win, with his extra variety and attacking weapons, it’s just by what margin. Murray dropped sets in both his victories against Jeremy Chardy and Joao Sousa and rather than enter the set betting market, we can back 8/15 Murray to win and both players to take a set at 11/8 with Hills. Alternatively you could dutch Murray 3-1 and Murray 3-2 at around 6/4.
Serena Williams v Sara Errani – Serena Williams 2-1 LWW (9/1 Skybet)
Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal – No Tie-Break in match (5/4 BWin)
Andy Murray v David Ferrer – Murray to win 3-1 (3/1 William Hill)
Andy Murray v David Ferrer – Murray to win 3-2 (11/2 William Hill)
New players to Paddy Power can back World No.1 Novak Djokovic at 4/1 to beat Rafael Nadal.
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