The ATP action continues with a big clay court tournament in Barcelona, which is going to give Rafael Nadal an opportunity to redeem himself after the loss against Novak Djokovic in Monte Carlo. However, the draw has not been very kind to him this time around and he will have to beat some very tricky opponents even in the first couple of rounds, so betting on him might easily prove to be a risky venture.
Who Can Win?
That is, of course, not to say that he cannot win the entire thing. The home conditions are going to give him a nice confidence boost, but only one look at the draw is needed for everyone to realize that his road to the finals is not going to be an easy one. In his first match, he might have to face Nicolas Almagro, with guys like Fernando Verdasco and Feliciano Lopez possibly coming into play later on. In the semis, he might have to play against Ferrer yet again – and, after so many tricky match-ups, that could perhaps be the end of his chances.
In fact, we think that there is value in putting money on the Spanish veteran. He is still up there with the very best players in the world and he was playing superb stuff in Monte Carlo against Nadal, even recovering from a *3-5 deficit in the second set before running out of steam in the decider. With plenty of rest under his belt and an arguably easier draw early on, he could be the man to beat in Barcelona next week.
Kei Nishikori, the number one seed, will also be there and it is hard to say that he is not going to do well, but those who have been tracking the tour since the start of the season know that he is yet to shine in the new season. Granted, he is the defending champion and he was absolutely stunning in this part of the season last year, but he did not play in Monaco and lost pretty tamely against Isner in Miami, so he may not be the most trustworthy guy around at this very moment. It would not make any sense to rule him out, but, after taking a closer look at the odds, we believe that there is no point in backing him outright. Instead, we are going to have a play on Pablo Cuevas, one of the most underrated player around and a guy that is capable of beating anyone in the world on a good day.
Picking a lot of underdogs in the outright markets can easily go wrong if one of the favorites catches a good wave and wins the tournament in style, so we are not going to have more than three bets in that regard, but we are going to add Martin Klizan to our selections at massive odds. He is a guy that can be incredibly hit or miss even inside a single match, but one thing that he is capable of is winning tournaments in which there is a lot of tough opponents.
Those who are looking for some interesting match bets later in the week will do well to track Fabio Fognini, who could be worth a bet against a bigger name with the right price tag, while Benoit Paire could also get a few surprising victories on the board if he gets past Ernests Gulbis in the first round, which does not seem incredibly unlikely given how poor the Latvian was against Andreas Haider-Maurer in Monte Carlo. All in all, we should be in for a very interesting event next week, perhaps even more interesting than the Monte Carlo Masters, which did not bring a lot of upsets or any truly special matches worth remembering.
David Ferrer to win ATP Barcelona 2015 (Best Odds: 9.00 @ BetVictor)
Pablo Cuevas to win ATP Barcelona 2015 (Best Odds: 67.00 @ BetVictor)
Martin Klizan to win ATP Barcelona 2015 (Best Odds: 67.00 @ BetVictor)