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Europa League today and as you know I lay awake at night in excitement at this event. It is tough to read although I have plumped for Marseille today. Arsenal v Atl Madrid is tough to call. We know from following Madrid domestically that defence is their strength. Given the quiet football day, I have done some tennis research. The key to tennis is to wait in play - remember Goffin - a high of 200 in play! If I can, I will follow the tennis on Twitter @drtclub and at the DRT Facebook page.

20:05 - Marseille v Salzburg - 1.7 Marseille

Marseille

  • Recent form home and away - a draw and 4 consecutive wins; 5-3-5 goals scored last 3 matches.
  • Recent form at home - only 1 loss in 21 was a 2-3 v Lyon; 3-2-0-5-5 goals scored at home recently.
  • Recent form home and away Europa League - no draw in 6; all 4 losses came away and were all 1-0.
  • Recent form home Europa League - 7 wins and a 0-0 last 8 at home; 2-0-3-3-5 goals scored recently.

Salzburg

  • Recent form home and away - only 3 wins in 6.
  • Recent form away - only 4 wins in 12; scored and conceded in 6 of their last 8 matches.
  • Recent form home and away Europa League - only 1 loss in 17 was a 4-2 v Lazio; scored and conceded in 5 of their last 6 matches.
  • Recent form away Europa League - only 1 loss in 9 was a 4-2 v Lazio; scored and conceded in 6 of their last 8.

Conclusions

  • For me, I am with Marseille today not to lose. They have the goal scoring potential that Lazio (a recent winner over Red Bull) have.
  • I will be laying any Red Bull Salzburg lead. Both teams could score but Marseille not lose on form.

20:05 - Arsenal v Atl Madrid - 2.62 Arsenal

Arsenal

  • Recent form home and away - only 1 loss in 9 matches; scored and conceded in 6 of their last 7 matches.
  • Recent form at home - 6 consecutive wins; 3+ goals scored in those wins.
  • Recent form home and away Europa League - very rare they venture into this competition; only 2 losses v Koln and Ostersunds; 3 wins and a 2-2 latest.
  • Recent form home Europa League - scored and conceded last 3; 2 consecutive wins scoring 3+ goals.

Atl Madrid

  • Recent form home and away - only 1 win in 5 matches.
  • Recent form away - 3 losses and a 1-1 draw last 4.
  • Recent form home and away Europa League - no draw since October 2011; 6 consecutive wins ended with a loss v Sporting - a tolerable loss as they won over 2 legs.
  • Recent form away Europa League - 1-4, 1-5, 1-0 recently - last in competition 2011, 2012, 2013.

Conclusions

  • 2 teams rarely in the competition are now deep in the competition.
  • Good home form meets poor away form - at least domestically. Very tough to call as Spanish sides have had a reputation for taking this competition very seriously.

WTA Istanbul

Danka Kovinic v Arantxa Rus - 1.76 Rus

  • 122nd v 136th - on rankings this could be a 3 setter.
  • Head to head Danka win back in 2014.
  • Both through qualifying. Rus yet to drop a set.
  • No angles here. 2 players I know little about. Assume a 3 setter based on tight rankings?

Aleksandra Krunic v Maria Sakkari - 1.83 Sakkari

  • 53rd v 52nd  -talk about tight rankings!
  • 0-2 Sakkari in head to heads. First sets were 7-6 and 7-5 and second sets 6-1!
  • Round of 16 is the deepest Krunic has been in a tournament on clay recently.
  • A similar story for Sakkari.
  • Based on head to heads, look to lay Krunic if it she breaks early first set. First sets have been tight and Sakkari could break back.

Polona Hercog v Kateryna Bondarenko - 1.48 Hercog

  • 101 v 93rd - a day of tight rankings..
  • Kat won the sole head to head in 2015
  • Both players lost in 2 sets to Alize Cornet in Charleston. A hint Hercog is improving on play. I was impressed with her win v Hsieh and she lost to Sabalenka but beat her here in Istanbul.
  • On that basis the market looks right here. I would definitely lay any Bonda lead or if she breaks Hercog's serve.

Caroline Wozniacki v Sara Errani - 1.31 Wozza

  • All Hail to the Wozza.
  • 3rd v 145th.
  • 3-1 Wozza in head to heads albeit latest was 2014.
  • After Final, quarters and semis on hard, Wozza has dipped in form.
  • Last year on clay, quarter finalist Roland Garros and finalist in Bastad.
  • Couple of 3 setters for Errani on clay at Charleston suggests if she wins first set, Errani will not win 2-0 sets.
  • With the mighty Wozza here. Already backed her at 55 this year and won (carbon copy of the Goffin great escape which is at the DRT Facebook page).

Donna Vekic v Ajla Tomljanovic - 1.9 Vekic

  • 1.9 immediately suggests laying the first set winner.
  • 54th v 130th.
  • Vekic won head to head 2014.
  • Took advantage of Agnieska retirement first round so no form to speak of recently.
  • Aa good run for Donna last year on clay in the summer, round of 32 Madrid and round of 64 Rome giving Wozniacki 2 7-6 tie breaker sets.
  • It looks like Ajla is good on hard - final Dubai 100K event; semi finals Newport Beach; semi finals Indian Wells 125 K event. She is good at her level.
  • Only 4 tournaments recently on clay for Ajla, going out first round.
  • A hint that Vekic should not lose 2-0 today so take on any Ajla lead or early break.

ATP Barcelona

Jozef Kovalik v Dominic Thiem - 1.09 Thiem

  • 165th v 5th.
  • 7-6 7-6 Thiem last head to head Indian wells 2016.
  • Final, Quarters, Quarters, round of 32, on hard recently. Quarters Monte Carlo and spanked by Nadal after beating Djokovic but the way Djoko is playing, my Gran could beat him.
  • Jozef came through qualifying and was an easy 6-3 6-3 winner over Pella.
  • Thiem was taken to tie breaker first set in his opener. There may be a period where his odds will rise. I would certainly want to back Thiem at bigger odds in play.

Feliciano Lopez v Martin Klizan - 1.73 Klizan

  • 36th v 143rd.
  • Lopez win this year head to head on hard.
  • 2 3 setters already for Klizan. He beat Djokovic. Won the first set, lost 2nd.
  • 3 setter for Lopez in his opener.
  • A suggestion we lay the first set winner?

Malek Jaziri v Grigor Dimitrov - 1.17 Dimitrov

  • Stick Dimi on the reliable list with our Wozza.
  • 98th v 3rd.
  • Jaziri won in 4 sets in Dubai earlier this year.
  • Semis in Monte Carlo for Dimitrov did see 2 3 setters and a win over World Number 7 Goffin.
  • I must remain with Dimitrov today throughout. I hope Jaziri takes the first set as I would lay him.

Stefanos Tsitsipas v Albert Ramos-Vinolas - 1.69 Tsit

  • 91st v 23rd. The worse ranked player is favourite.
  • Round of 32 for Tsit at Monte Carlo.
  • Same for Vinolas. Vinolas does not tend to go deep into clay court tournaments bar a final in Quito in 2017, the rest have been round of 64 or 32 exits.
  • Slight favour the Greek today and lay Vinolas should Vinolas trade at 1.5 or lower.

Rafael Nadal v Guillermo Garcia-Lopez - 1.02 Nadal

  • Expect a 2-0 Nadal but do get into the habit of laying at 1.03. You never know. Nadal could pull a muscle.

Pablo Carreno Busta v Adrian Mannarino - 1.33 Busta

  • 10th v 28th.
  • Busta busted a cap in Paire's ass yesterday.
  • A solid Miami Masters for Busta reaching the semi finals on hard.
  • The highlight of last year on clay was a quarter finals at Roland Garros and a solid South American clay stint for Busta. Remember Busta is Spanish too and that may help raise his game.
  • Round of 64 seemed best case for Mannarino of late on clay.
  • I do think top 10 Busta should not lose today. I hope Busta's odds rise in play.

Pablo Andujar v Roberto Bautista Agut - 1.48 Agut

  • Last met 2005. No ranking Pablo at mo. Agut 20th.
  • Andujar might offer some resistance today. He recently won 2 clay court tournaments - Alicante Challenger and Casablanca beating Kyle Edmund (50th).
  • Agut a good trade v Karlovic last round where he lost first set, won the next 2.
  • For me, Agut is layable even at 1.49 but I would prefer to lay Agut if Agut wins first set (his odds will be lower). The hope is Andujar shows the form that won him 2 recent clay events.

David Goffin v Karen Khachanov - 1.94 Goffin

  • Brilliant display Goffin last round and backable at an absolute high of 200 in play.
  • 7th v 45th.
  • 3-1 Goffin head to heads.
  • 3 quarter finals on clay last year for Karen suggests he will give the Goff something to think about.
  • I am well in profit with the Goff so will stick with the rankings and head to heads and lay Karen, if Karen wins first set, preferably wins first set and breaks 2nd set.

ATP Hungary

Andreas Seppi v Mikhail Youzhny - 1.44 Seppi

  • 86th v 84th.
  • 5-2 Youzhny in head to heads. Seppi won the last head to head.
  • Good recent run on hard from Seppi,semi final Rotterdam followed by round of 16 clay Monte Carlo. That's 4 consecutive 3 setters now for Seppi, losing only 1 so if Youznhy wins first set lay him.

Nikoloz Basilashvili v Denis Shapovalov - 1.74 Denis

  • 59th v 51st - the story of today tight rankings.
  • Terrible hard court season Basil, fawlty on that surface. Quarter finals on clay though at Casablanca saw 2 3 setters and 2 tie breakers and a 7-5 set so hard fought and unlikely to win 2-0 I'd say, today.
  • Clay does not seem to be Denis's surface and on that basis I would look to lay the first set winner today. Why? Basil tends towards 3 setters on clay; Denis tends not to go deep in clay tournaments.

Maximilian Marterer v Yannick Maden - 1.7 Marterer

  • 90th v 148th.
  • Maden has won the 2 clay court head to heads 2013 and 2016.
  • 2 3 setters first leg for these 2.
  • Little else to interest me here.

Lucas Pouille v John Millman - 1.34 Pouille

  • 18th v 128th 3 setter sole head to head for Millman.
  • Pouille excels on hard it seems, 3 finals in 4 recent tournaments.
  • Last year on clay, Pouille reached the semi finals at Monte Carlo and won this Budapest tournament.
  • Millman can surprise. It was his battle with Dimitrov in Brisbane which enabled a back of Dimitrov at odds as high as 18 in running.
  • 4 of his last 5 clay tournaments were 1st rounders.
  • I think Pouille will win. I only hope Millman can push him to enable us to back him at enhanced odds.