Indian Wells Tennis Handicap Betting Preview – Fri/Sat 18th/19th Mar by @DavAulak

Novak Djokovic v Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

This looks to be a fascinating Quarter Final if Novak Djokovic is not up to full strength having admitted he has had a few health issues over the last couple of weeks. That has shown up in some less than dominant performances this week, but Djokovic was a very good winner over Feliciano Lopez in the Fourth Round and I think that positive will set him up to end Indian Wells in a positive way.

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He will be challenged by Jo-Wilfried Tsonga who should enjoy the conditions as he can power through the court, but the Frenchman has to be at his very best to beat someone of the calibre of Djokovic. Tsonga showed in the Canadian Masters of 2014 that he is still able to dig deep and produce top performances, but I also believe that the Frenchman might be on the downward slope of his career.

That was also a rare success against Djokovic who has won 10 of the last 11 matches between the pair. The majority of those have been dominated by the World Number 1 and I think it might be another day where Djokovic is able to weather the Tsonga storm and then pull away for a comfortable looking win.

It will have to be a better serving day than Djokovic has produced for the most part this week and he will also have to be at the top of his game when it comes to the return. Tsonga has yet to be broken this week and that will give him confidence, but he is hasn’t played a returner of the calibre of Djokovic and I expecting the World Number 1 to win this one 75, 63.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Novak Djokovic -4.5 Games at 2.00 with Pinnacle


Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland plays against Anna-Lena Friedsam of Germany at their match during the Shenzhen Open Women's Singles Semifinal in Shenzhen, Guangdong province, China January 8, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer

Agnieszka Radwanska

Serena Williams v Agnieszka Radwanska

The World Number 1 Serena Williams has made comfortable progress through the draw into this Semi Final and I am not surprised she is a big favourite to beat Agnieszka Radwanska. The American has won all 9 previous matches between the two players and the majority of those have been very one-sided as the Williams power has proved too much for Radwanska to handle.

It has been a good 2016 season for Radwanska, and she has played well at Indian Wells with just a single set dropped so far. However the mental hurdle of facing Williams has proved too much for Radwanska who took a heavy loss in the Australian Open Semi Final to the World Number 1.

Of course she might look at the closer second set as the blueprint to take forward, but Radwanska is always going to be under pressure dealing with the Williams serve. Her own serve doesn’t really offer as many cheap points and having to work hard to negate the Williams power has proved a little too much for her through her career.

I wouldn’t be surprised if one of the sets played in this Semi Final is very competitive, but I do think Williams is going to find at least a couple breaks of serve in another set which should set her up for the cover. This Semi Final has all the makings of a 64, 62 kind of win for Serena Williams and I will back her to cover the games in this Semi Final.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Serena Williams -5.5 Games at 2.00 with Bet365

Prices correct at the time of writing.

By @DavAulak


ATP Indian Wells Tennis Handicap Betting Preview – Wed 16th March by @DavAulak

Rafael Nadal v Alexander Zverev

Rafael Nadal has to be pleased with the way he battled through the second set of his win over Fernando Verdasco on Tuesday. That was the kind of set he might have dropped earlier in the season, but it is clear that Nadal is not quite up to the top of his game.

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That makes the challenge of Alexander Zverev a difficult one for him, but I do think Nadal is able to beat the youngster when the meet in the Fourth Round. There is a lot to like about the Zverev game, but his inexperience can see him offer up a few chances to break serve and that could be critical in this one.

It has been a very strong week for Zverev who has had impressive wins over Grigor Dimitrov and Gilles Simon in the last two Rounds to get into this one. When he is serving well, Zverev is able to get himself into a very strong position in the rallies, but a first meeting with Rafael Nadal is all about controlling the nerves as well as producing the tennis required to beat the former World Number 1.


Rafa Nadal

Rafa Nadal

I have little doubt that Zverev will have some chances to break the Nadal serve because the Spaniard is not really protecting that shot as he was a few years ago. However I think ultimately Nadal is too strong on the day and Zverev has crumbled a couple of times in matches when things have begun to go against him. I don’t think that happens here although I do think Nadal is a little too good at this point and will record a 64, 64 win.

HANDICAP BETTING PICK: Rafael Nadal -3.5 Games @ 1.98 with 888 Sport

Prices correct at time of writing.

By @DavAulak.



ATP/WTA Indian Wells Tennis Handicap Betting Preview – Mon 14th Mar by @DavAulak

Marin Cilic v Leonardo Mayer

Marin Cilic earned some revenge for a loss in Acapulco by seeing off Ryan Harrison fairly comfortably in the Second Round and I think he will be too good for Leonardo Mayer in the Third Round.

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A couple of solid wins have helped Leonardo Mayer through to this Round at Indian Wells and it is much better than the results he has had so far in 2016. The Argentinian Number 1 has a decent first serve and is quite solid off the ground, but the opponent he faces in this Round is a significant step up in class.

Aggressive returning should put Cilic in a position to break serve, but he will need to serve well himself if he is going to be able to see off Mayer. That has been an issue for him at some moments this season which has made matches more awkward than they perhaps should have been and Cilic has to be aware that he can’t give Mayer any encouragement in this one.

Marin Cilic did beat Leonardo Mayer fairly comfortably at the French Open last season and I think he played well enough in the Second Round to think he can get something similar out of this match. It might need a couple of breaks of serve in a set to make sure Cilic takes that to get going and I believe he comes through 64, 64 in this one.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Marin Cilic -3.5 Games at 2.08 with Unibet


Stan Wawrinka v Andrey Kuznetsov

This looks a big spread on the face of things, especially when you consider how Stan Wawrinka can be a little off the boil at times and struggles with these big numbers. However the Number 3 Seed looked in good shape in the Second Round and I think Wawrinka being asked to cover this number at odds against is appealing to back him to do so.

The match won’t be straight-forward against Andrey Kuznetsov who has had two solid wins in Indian Wells while pushing the likes of Rafael Nadal and Gael Monfils to competitive matches earlier in the season. The Russian has a decent serve and backs it up effectively with his play off the ground, but he will be having to deal with some special power that comes from the Wawrinka racquet.

The key to the match will be the second serve of both players and how well their opponent can challenge that shot. It is an area that I believe Wawrinka will be the stronger of the two and the Swiss player has to be feeling good after winning the title in Dubai a couple of weeks ago.

A good serving day from Wawrinka should put him in a strong position to win this match 64, 63 and I think he can be backed at odds against to cover these games against a solid opponent, but ultimately one that gives him a few more chances to break serve.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Stan Wawrinka -4.5 Games at 2.20 with BET365


Johanna Konta v Denisa Allertova

This is the second time in 2016 that Johanna Konta and Denisa Allertova will be meeting and I expect the Great British Number 1 to come through for a second time. Both players will see this as a big chance to progress to the Fourth Round of a major WTA event, but Konta has experience behind her having done the same with a really positive run at the Australian Open.

For Denisa Allertova, she has to come through the emotional factor of beating the Australian Open Champion Angelique Kerber in the Second Round. Backing up those big wins can be difficult for players who are simply not used to having that success on the court at this moment of their career and the match with Konta is one where a totally different mindset is needed.

Konta has a very decent serve that can put pressure on Allertova and she is fairly convincing at the back of the court which makes her dangerous when it comes to a return of serve. She also has an ability to get plenty of balls back in play on the defensive and Allertova made a whole host of unforced errors when these players met at the Australian Open earlier this season.

This will be much closer than the 2 and 2 win that Konta had in that match, but I still think she can get the better of Allertova. The latter trying to back up her big win over Kerber is going to be tough mentally and I think Konta will work through for a 75, 64 win.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Johanna Konta -2.5 Games at 1.98 with Unibet

Prices correct at time of writing.

By @DavAulak.