Tennis Tips: Muller and Mahut to keep it tight

gilles muller

IT was two winners from three yesterday with Steve Johnson landing the 2.90 pick with victory over Milos Raonic and Thomas Fabbiano bringing up the 2.12 by covering the +1.5 sets against Damir Dzumhur.

On to today’s action and first up it’s the Open 13 in Marseille.

Gilles Muller vs Nicolas Mahut

I’m tempted to back Mahut as underdog in conditions the Frenchman enjoys and has proven very difficult to break in.

At this event Mahut has held serve 89.9% of the time and broken only 12.5% of the time, which gives him a very similar profile to Muller, who (in only four matches here) has held 92.7% and broken 12.7%.

That’s a small sample size for Muller, but it’s similar to his last 10 matches on indoor hard, where he holds 86.2% and breaks 13.8% and most of those 10 matches were in slower conditions than this in Rotterdam and Sofia.

The Luxembourger hasn’t been the same player he was a year ago so far in 2018 and he’s lost his last four against Mahut, but three of those were many years ago and they’ve clashed just the once (on grass) in the last seven years.

Tie breaks seems highly likely and the 2.25 about over 10.5 games in set one looks the bet in what’ll likely be a clash of very few break chances.

Delray Beach Open
Frances Tiafoe vs Juan Martin Del Potro

Probably the one with the best chance of doing something at a good price is Tiafoe, who has the game to take a set off Del Potro, as he did in Acapulco last year in similarly slow conditions on outdoor hard.

There’s a lack of consistency in Tiafoe’s game for sure, but he’s proven explosive enough to compete with the best for varying lengths of time during matches, taking sets off Roger Federer, David Goffin, Kevin Anderson and beating Alexander Zverev.

I seem to recall we backed Tiafoe when he beat what was a tired Zverev in Cincy when the German had just won Washington DC, so there are mitigating circumstances surrounding that victory, but he does seem to play his best stuff at home.

Those matches where he was competitive against Federer, Goffin, Anderson and Zverev all came in the USA and the Delpo one was not far away in Mexico, so if we are going to trust him this looks a decent location to do it.

Delpo’s been through it a bit lately, splitting with his girlfriend and then his dog reportedly died and he admits he didn’t have the best preparation for this event.

He should still be too much for Tiafoe in the end and I like the 2-1 to Delpo at 3.85 here.

Best Bets

  • 1.5 points win over 10.5 games in set one of Muller v Mahut (2.28, Unibet)
  • 1 point win Del Potro to beat Tiafoe 2-1 (3.85, Unibet)
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