It’s finals day at the China Open on
Sunday, and first up in the men's side of the bracket Tomas Berdych takes on Marin Cilic before the ladies take
centre stage and Agnieszka Radwanska meets Andrea Petkovic.
Tomas Berdych v Marin Cilic
After tough years for both these players,
they’ll certainly be delighted to have come through to the final, and with
neither having picked up a tour title so far in 2011 there’ll certainly be a
battle on to take home a prestigious trophy here in China.
Tomas Berdych has struggled for confidence
at times over the course of 2011 and having been defeated at the semi-final
stage five times previously in 2011, even the tennis odds makers went against
him as he met in-from Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, in Saturday’s semi-final.
Berdych, who has been on top of his game
all week in China, took control of his first tout meeting with the Frenchman
early on and despite wobbling a little to lose the second set, the Czech No.1 came
back strongly in the decider, running out to a 6-1 win.
Having finally overcome a semi-final hurdle
and beaten Verdasco and Melzer already this week, Berdych will feel confident
of victory in Sunday’s final and, currently ranked 10th in the race
for London, the ranking points that come with victory here will ensure his
motivation remains high.
Marin Cilic hasn’t won a tour title since
February of last year, and like his opponent on Sunday, the 23-year-old
Croatian has been suffering a little with confidence.
Wins over Anderson and Ljubicic so far this
week will have given the World No.25 a boost, however he has dropped sets here
and it’s probably fair to say Cilic has had a far easier run through to the
final than Berdych.
The pair have met three times previously in
their careers and it’s Berdych who holds a 2-1 advantage. However Cilic won
their most recent meeting in Marseilles,
this year, coming through comfortably in straight sets.
Both men will be desperate to end their
barren spells on Sunday afternoon in China, but for me it’s Tomas
Berdych who’ll have the edge. Having finally made it past the semi-final stage
and having played some great tennis against top quality opponents, he’s looking
in perfect shape and should be able to see off the Croatian challenge in
Tomas Berdych to win the match – 2/5 –
Berdych to win 2-0 – 11/10
Agnieszka Radwanska v Andrea Petkovic
It’ll be Germany
v Poland in China on Sunday
as World No.11, Andrea Petkovic takes on World No.12 Agnieszka Radwanska.
This one is hugely tough to call for tennis betting. Both
women have had superb weeks here in China and they both have a title to
their names so far in 2011. Petkovic seems to have had a slightly tougher run
through to the final, especially as she has had to play a game more than her
Polish rival, who received a bye through the first round. Wins over Bartoli and
Pavlyuchenkova will have really boosted the young German’s confidence ahead of
It’s the head-to-head stats which finally
shows us a split between the pair. They have met four times so far on the tour
and Radwanska has won all four meetings. All their matches have been played on
hard courts, including two matches earlier this year, and it’s the Pole who has
an 8 sets to 2 lead.
Although these two are ranked side-by-side and
have both played well to reach this stage, the tennis bookmakers have certainly
taken the head-to-head records into account and have priced Radwanska up as a
big favourite for this one.
For me, this is almost impossible to call
so why not take advantage of some very generous odds on Petkovic and back her
to take her first match against Radwanska.
Andrea Petkovic to win 9/5 – Victor
Andrea Petkovic to win 2-1 – 22/5