It’s the last day of week 1 and while the men’s results have been fairly routine, on the women’s side a couple of big upsets sees the field start to open up. Barty and Sabalenka are both out with Swiatek and Serena left as the two favorites. Will we see another surprise winner begin to emerge as we end week 1? Join me as I analyze day 8 in Paris and offer my best value tennis picks and predictions for Sportsbook Review!
Alexander Zverev vs. Kei Nishikori
Sunday, June 06, 2021 – 03:00 PM EST at Roland-Garros
We were unfortunate with our Zverev over bet last out with Djere 40-0 5-3 up on serve in the second set. He lost the next four games and eventually lost 6-2 7-5 6-2. Right idea, wrong result, as they say, and I’m going back to the well with over 33.5 games at -111 (1.9) with BookMaker (visit our BookMaker Review).
Nishikori looks long at +500 (6) against Zverev and I imagine he’ll have his moments, but a few factors push me towards the over instead of the money line.
Nishikori has lost four of five against Zverev including two this year but three of those five matches have gone to three sets, most recently this year in Rome, less than a month ago. Nishikori has lost six of eight as underdog at the French Open for a -38% ROI but he’s won a set in five of those, and the three where he didn’t were against Djokovic and Nadal (twice). He has also only finished under the total line in 15 of his last 50 matches as underdog overall.
The French Open tends to be very poor for betting on underdogs, especially later in the event, so all in all I’m not inclined to take that angle. But Nishikori does tend to take sets against high level opposition in similar situations and has a history of long matches as underdog.
Perhaps as importantly, Zverev goes AWOL mentally a lot in slams and tends to struggle to win easily. As mentioned in my previous article, he has covered the over line in 18 of his last 26 as a favourite in slams going back to 2019. He really should have gone over the total line against Djere last out too.
We’ve not had much luck with the overs so far but again I feel this is clearly a match where Nishikori, while likely to ultimately end up lacking, clearly has the game to push Zverev to at least four sets.
All in all, I like the look of the Over.
Free Tennis Pick: Over 33.5 games -111 (1.9) with BookMaker
Serena Williams vs. Elena Rybakina
Sunday, June 6, 2021 - 11:45 AM EST at Roland-Garros
We were similarly unfortunate with our over bet in Williams vs Collins, as Collins needed just one more game at 4-6 4-1, but she lost 6-4 6-4 in the end. Nonetheless, the thesis that Serena is still struggling to win easily remains intact to my mind and she’s got another tall, powerful player in Rybakina next out. So I’ll take a chance on over 21.5 games at -111 (1. 9) with BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review).
Rybakina has tremendous talent and is a very dangerous player on her day, though she’s struggled for form of late. At 6’ 0” it is unsurprising that she has a lot of natural power and a strong serve, and her issue has been consistent execution and a propensity for errors.
Nonetheless, she’s been able to find her form for at least periods of matches with just nine of her last 25 matches as an underdog finishing under the total games line going back to 2019. In her last match at a similar price on clay she lost 7-6 7-5 to Mertens back in April.
Serena was lucky to win under the total games line last out and just eight of her 27 matches since August 2020 (post Covid) have finished under the total line. As I mentioned in the previous article, she is increasingly relying on her strong serve and power off the ground with her limited movement and defensive capabilities, making it difficult to win easily.
I would be surprised if either dominated in what will likely be a power orientated match up, As long as they both serve reasonably well and hold their nerve, this has all the makings of a tight match. I would have had the line at 22 or the odds a little shorter, so the play looks to be the Over.
Free Tennis Pick: Over 21.5 games at -111 (1. 9) with BetOnline
*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.