Tournaments in Antalya and Eastbourne provide a last chance for players to prepare for Wimbledon – Andy Schooler brings you his ATP tennis betting tips for this week.

 

Turkish Airlines Open

Antalya, Turkey (outdoor grass)

For the third and probably final time, Antalya stages a pre-Wimbledon grasscourt tournament and there’s every chance it delivers another big-priced winner.

The champions here so far have been Yuichi Sugita and Damir Dzumhur, both of whom you could have backed at decent odds.

In truth, few would have done and this year’s event looks hard to call too.

Take the draw as a standalone piece of evidence and it’s hard to argue that the top of the market is wrong.

 

Adrian Mannarino, the winner in Den Bosch, is the 9/2 favourite, just ahead of top seed Benoit Paire, who has won two titles (albeit on clay) in the past couple of months. Jordan Thompson – a player we had placed at 35/1 in Den Bosch – is third on the list at 8/1.

Those three all have the game to succeed on grass and have proved it, but we’re in a week before a Grand Slam and as I’ve written many times before, backing the shorties at this time is a dangerous business.

Oppose favourites

The slightest of injuries can lead to a withdrawal, while there’s always the not-talked-about concern of a player not actually wanting to play a full week of tennis. We’re also a long way from Wimbledon here with different conditions – for a start it’s going to in the 30s temperature-wise.

While I wouldn’t be surprised to see one of the aforementioned trio hoisting the trophy aloft on Saturday, the prices aren’t for me.

I’d rather pick out some longer shots, in particular looking for players who will really want to be here next weekend.

I’ll start in the top half – that of Paire and Thompson – where I’m going to back Miomir Kecmanovic and Damir Dzumhur to small stakes.

Kecmanovic is in the first quarter and he looks best-placed to capitalise if Paire throws in one of his crazy weeks which never seem too far away.

The Serb beat Philipp Kohlschreiber in Stuttgart recently and last week pushed top-10 star Karen Khachanov hard in Halle.

He opens against Jaume Munar, a player who has never won a grasscourt match. He could face another with such a record, Federico Delbonis, in round two, although Ugo Humbert looks a more likely foe.

With his strong serve, Humbert is not without a chance but I’ve been a tad disappointed with him over the past couple of weeks – he arrives off the back of defeat in the Ilkey Challenger quarter-finals – so Kecmanovic is my man at 16/1.

Dzumhur to repeat?

I also can’t resist backing defending champion Dzumhur at 20/1.

He looks a great example of a player who will really want to win this week.

With 250 ranking points to defend, he knows an early exit could see him drop out of the top 100.

Dzumhur has had his injury problems this season but recaptured some form on the Geneva clay when he made the quarter-finals, beating Stan Wawrinka en route.

Don’t be too concerned about the shoulder injury cited for his Halle withdrawal last week – it later emerged he had flown back to see his ill grandmother, who has subsequently died. That could perhaps be further motivation for him this week.

Dzumhur does have a potentially tricky opener to negotiate against Matt Ebden, but the Australian wasn’t very good at all when we backed him in Halle. Thompson could follow at the last-eight stage but I’m still interested given the price.

Sousa’s revenge mission

Finally, I’ll also take one in the bottom half of the draw, namely Joao Sousa.

The Portuguese pushed Borna Coric to 7-6 in the final set in Halle last week, serving well.

His section looks another weak one and it’s not hard to envisage a quarter-final clash with Mannarino.

He’d be an outsider for that one but it’s worth considering last year’s clash between the pair which occurred at the same stage.

Mannarino won in two tight sets that day but Sousa had plenty of chances, failing on all nine break points he created.

Essentially, a rematch would be winnable and so I’ll add Sousa to the staking plan at 14/1.

Tips:

Miomir Kecmanovic each-way –

Damir Dzumhur each-way –

Joao Sousa each-way –

Nature Valley International

Eastbourne, England (outdoor grass)

It’s another wide-open event in Eastbourne where I’m happy to dismiss the chances of 6/1 favourite Kyle Edmund, who is not at home on this surface and hasn’t been in good form either.

Take the Briton out of the equation and it’s 10/1 the field.

I’m also prepared to leave both Feliciano Lopez and Gilles Simon alone. Lopez has won here twice but having reached both the singles and doubles finals at Queen’s Club, the 37-year-old surely won’t be going all the way here too.

Fellow veteran Simon also made the final at Queen’s and while he’s a former finalist at Devonshire Park, I very much doubt he’ll want another full week of tennis in his legs ahead of Wimbledon.

Some will be keen on Sam Querrey filling the void – he made the semis here in 2014 and the final Nottingham in this same week in 2015.

However, he’s not played since April due to an abdominal injury and we saw at Queen’s last week with Kevin Anderson that it can take a while for the rust to be shaken off.

Hot Chilean

Of course, it’s all very well saying who’s not going to win but who is capable of lifting the trophy on Saturday?

Well, I’m going to take one in each half. The bottom section looks weaker and here I’m plumping for Nicolas Jarry.

The big-serving Chilean appears to have found his feet on the surface this season and he’s managed to build on an impressive year to date.

During the clay season he beat both Alex Zverev and Grigor Dimitrov in Barcelona before finishing runner-up in Geneva – notably that was also the week before a Slam.

After moving onto the grass the took down Stefanos Tsitsipas in Den Bosch and while he lost in qualifying last weekend after a dash to Queen’s, losing 7-6 in the third to Nicolas Mahut on this surface is no disgrace.

That loss also means he’ll be keen on more matches this week and having landed in a decent section of the draw, Jarry can go well.

He starts against Pablo Cuevas, a player he beat on clay when they last met in 2018. A fatigued Simon could follow – if he’s even shown up – while I’d be surprised to see scheduled quarter-final foe Laslo Djere around in the latter stages.

Chardy class

In the top half, Jeremy Chardy earns the vote.

He enjoyed a fine grasscourt season 12 months ago, winning the Challenger title at Surbiton, reaching the Den Bosch final and then the Queen’s semis.

The start of his 2019 grass campaign was delayed by a back injury but he looked fine at Queen’s last week when he dominated against Mikhail Kukushkin and then pushed Tsitsipas all the way to 7-6 in the third.

He’s another who will be keen to get plenty more matches under his belt this week and the 2014 quarter-finalist looks well placed to take down Brits Cameron Norrie and Edmund, both of whom have been struggling of late and would rather be on another surface.

Tips:

Nicolas Jarry Each Way

Jeremy Chardy Each Way

Odds are correct at the time of posting

Join the discussion