After the Davis Cup emotions, the ATP World Tour returns with St. Petersburg hosting the biggest tournament of the week. Join us and find out who are the main contenders, as well as the highest value tennis picks to place.
Top Half of the Draw
After winning his third Grand Slam title at the US Open, Stan Wawrinka returns to competition this week in St. Petersburg. Despite his outstanding campaign in New York, Wawrinka is known for his inconsistency and with that in mind, it's unlikely to see the Swiss maintaining the same level on this event. Adding to this, Stan won't have an easy debut against the unpredictable Lukas Rosol and for those reasons, our suggestion is for you avoid placing any bet on Wawrinka, who is currently priced at 3.25 at Bet365 to win the title.
Due to his consistent baseline game and extremely competitive mindset, Roberto Bautista Agut can adjust easily to any surface. However, the faster game conditions clearly benefit Agut's game style, with the Spaniard winning 63.33% of the matches played throughout his career on Indoor Hard Court while his overall winning record is only 60.29%. After reaching the semifinals in 2015, Agut is trying to go a step further this year in St. Petersburg.
Looking now at Roberto's draw on this event, the Spaniard starts his campaign against the former junior world no.1, Ricardas Berankis. Despite Berankis' terrific ball striking skills, Bautista Agut's baseline consistency should be too much for the Lithuanian to handle, with Roberto winning their last encounter one year ago in Moscow. Looking now to August's potential opponents in the quarterfinals, João Sousa is the highest ranked player on his quarter. Even though Sousa holds an outstanding record on this surface, it won't be easy for the 2015 St. Petersburg Open runner-up to present his best tennis after playing for his country just a few days ago on a completely different surface – clay.
With Wawrinka struggling to perform at his best, Bautista Agut should take advantage of that to reach his 5th career final on Indoor Hard Court. Having said that, our recommendation is for you to take advantage of Agut's betting odds at +800 at Bet365, in a tournament where he should be a valuable investment.
Bottom Half of the Draw
After a disappointing 2nd round loss at the US Open against Ryan Harrison, the defending champion – Milos Raonic – returns to St. Petersburg where he's once again the main favorite to lift the trophy. Known as one of the biggest servers in the history of the game, the fast game conditions in St. Petersburg clearly suits Raonic's powerful game with the Canadian winning an average of 92.70% of his service games on Indoor Hard Court.
Looking now to Raonic's draw on this event, the Canadian won't have an easy debut in St. Petersburg with dangerous opponents on his quarter such as Mikhail Youzhny and Alexander Zverev. However, neither of these should present the required consistency to defeat the world no.6 and for that reason, we expect to see Milos reaching this event's semifinals for the second consecutive year.
Considering now Raonic's potential opponents in the semifinals, the Canadian might face another top 10 player – Tomas Berdych. These two players know each other well and even though Berdych is never an easy opponent to face, it is Raonic who holds the lead on the h2h by 4 – 2, with the Canadian winning also their previous encounter earlier this year in Indian Wells. With this in mind, our advice is for you to add Raonic to your betting picks to leave St. Petersburg with his second consecutive title at +225 at Bet365.