Join us on our ATP 500 Tokyo tournament analysis that takes place this week. Find out who are the main contenders, the player to keep an eye and the highest value tennis picks to place.
After Stan Wawrinka's withdrawal, the two-time ATP Tokyo champion – Kei Nishikori – is now the undeniable favorite to win another title on his home country. Nishikori loves to compete on this event with an extraordinary 15 – 2 record since 2012.
Looking now to Nishikori's draw on this event, the Japanese starts his campaign against Nicolas Almagro. Back in 2013, Almagro surprised Nishikori on this event's quarterfinals with a 7 – 6 5 – 7 6 – 3 triumph; however, the Spaniard is far from his best and currently outside top 45. Therefore, Kei shouldn't experience any major issues to defeat Almagro.
In the following round, it's expected another easy contest against the Portuguese no.1 – João Sousa. These two players will face each other for the first time in their careers, with an easy straight sets victory for the Japanese in prospect.
Considering now Nishikori's potential opponents in the quarterfinals, David Goffin is the highest ranked player on Kei's quarter. Known as a remarkable counter puncher, Goffin is never an easy opponent to face. However, Nishikori holds a solid 3 – 0 lead on the h2h with only on set lost to the Belgian. For that reason, we should see the Japanese reaching the Japan Open semifinals for the 4th time in five years.
Marin Cilic is the biggest threat on Nishikori's half of the draw yet, it won't be easy for the 2014 US Open champion to reach the semifinals in Tokyo. With so many talented and dangerous players on his quarter such as Benoit Paire, Fernando Verdasco and Feliciano Lopez, it wouldn't be surprising to see Cilic losing on the first rounds. Therefore, our suggestion is for you to avoid placing any bet on the Croatian to win this competition at +500 at BetVictor.
It has been an outstanding year for Gael Monfils currently ranked as world no.6 in the ATP Race to London. As we mentioned in previous articles, Monfils is a different player in 2016, with his new coach – Mikael Tillstrom – as the main reason for his improvement.
Looking now at Gael's draw on this event, the 2010 runner-up won't have an easy task in Tokyo. A very tough contest is expected in the 2nd round against his fellow countryman – Gilles Simon – a player that holds an amazing 6 – 1 lead on the h2h against Monfils.
If Gael survives this difficult match, the French might face one of the greatest servers in the history of the game, Ivo Karlovic. Even though Monfils leads by 3 – 2 on the h2h, Karlovic can create problems to anyone on the tour with that massive serve and is never a good idea to bet against such a dangerous player.
With so many difficult obstacles on Gael's path, it's impossible for us to find any value on his current odds at +550 at Bet365.
With the other two main contenders facing a very difficult draw, our advice is for you to add Nishikori to your betting picks to win his third career title in Tokyo at +275 at Coral.
Player to keep an eye on
Known for his terrific skills at the net, Feliciano Lopez is always a dangerous player, especially on bigger events like this one in Tokyo. As we mentioned before, Feliciano is on the 2nd quarter of the draw with Marin Cilic and the two might face in the quarterfinals. Even though Cilic is the main favorite for that encounter, it wouldn't be surprising to see Feliciano emerging victorious from that contest. With Bet365 currently offering +450 for Lopez to win the 2nd quarter, our suggestion is for you to take advantage of those betting odds.