Roland Garros – Day 4

Diego Schwartzman vs Stefano Napolitano

Suggested Bet

5 units Napolitano to defeat Schwartzman at $6.50 at Betfair after commission

My plays are generally based on form and matchup, and some other times it can be predominantly situational.

Today, we have a play that is form based, matchup based AND situational, AND it is at a price greater than $6.

Those who have been following since the start of the tournament will know we had a handy win on Napolitano in round one, not only covering his +5.5 game handicap, but also winning outright, winning the 3rd and 4th sets 6-2 6-2. Whilst that play had a situational element to it, I was also thoroughly impressed with the game of Napolitano, especially his return game. He put in some exceptional second serve returns (and first serve), with a great amount of power and depth, causing Zverev to rarely get settled on serve. Zverev was only able to manage winning 64% of points on his first serve, and 34% on his second serve.

This is where the play gets interesting.

I have been looking for an opportunity to oppose Schwartzman in Grand Slam tennis for a while, and today the day is here.

Schwartzman has quite a poor best of 5 set record. He has only played 17 best of 5 set matches in his career, and he has won 5 of them! I grant that he has lost 6 of his matches to seeded players (including Djokovic, Federer and Nadal), but the fitness factor needs to be considered here. Schwartzman has had a history of cramps and fatigue, including a 4th set retirement in the heat at the Australian Open to John Millman last year.

We are in uncharted territory tonight: Schwartzman had never won a 5 set match before 2 DAYS AGO.

For a player that relies so much on his movement and fitness to get himself over the line, he had multiple medical timeouts vs Andrey Rublev in the first round. The best part was that the 5th set took them 16 games, with the match going to 9-7 in the 5th set lasting over 3 and a half hours.

If Napolitano plays to his level against Zverev, he is right in this match. He will have opportunities to attack the Schwartzman second serve, and I would argue that the longer the match goes on, the more it may play into the hands of Napolitano here.

This is a big call. Some may say it is a huge call. Win or lose, i HAVE to take this price here.

For those coming on the journey tonight, let me know and we can cheer on our favourite Italian together!


Richel Hogenkamp vs Elise Mertens

Suggested Bet

3 units Hogenkamp to defeat Mertens at $2.01 at Pinnacle

Happy to continue to ride the Hogenkamp bandwagon here. Statistically she was pretty ruthless against Jelena Jankovic in round 1, continuing her hot streak of recent weeks. Hogenkamp managed to win 82% of points behind her first serve, and 55% of points on her second serve, impressive stats against Jankovic on clay.

When you think back to my women’s draw preview, I made a note to consider Mertens as a chance to beat Gavrilova from a situational play standpoint, as Gavrilova was coming into the Grand Slam coming off two VERY full weeks on the tennis court. As a result of that, I believe the books have slightly overvalued the win from Mertens in round one, and shifted the odds too far in favour of Mertens here as a result. Mertens broke 6 times, and was broken herself 7 times. She cannot afford to drop her serve so consistently when coming up against Hogenkamp, and as a result of both players recent form I really believe Hogenkamp is favourite in this match.





I've had a passion for Tennis since I was young and haven't missed a Grand Slam ever since I can remember. I'm always happy to talk Tennis on twitter and respond to any queries so feel free to tweet me your questions.

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