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19:45 - Derby County v Cardiff - 2.7 Cardiff

  • Both Championship matches today see the favourite at 2.7 odds. This suggests both matches are too tough to call.
  • 0-0 the last time these 2 met.

Derby County (7th)

  • Only 2 wins in 13 matches.
  • 3 consecutive defeats.
  • Only 1 win in 6 home matches.
  • Scored in their last 7 at home.
  • Only 1 0-0 at home.
  • v the top 13 at home, losses came v 1st, 3rd and 5th.

Cardiff (2nd)

  • 2 losses ended with 2 wins latest.
  • 11 0-0's at halftime away (52%).
  • Only 1 loss v the top 8 away scoring 2-1-0-1-1-3 goals.
  • 11 goals scored away last 15 mins of matches.

Conclusions

  • A win takes Derby into the top 6. A win for Cardiff cements 2nd place and automatic promotion.
  • This is the antithesis of a relegation six pointer. It is a promotion six pointer.
  • No surprise to see a 0-0 at halftime based on Cardiff's stats.
  • This is tough to call. Only 3 losses for Derby at home v the top 13. Only 1 loss away for Cardiff v the top 8.
  • Note Cardiff's late goalscoring. You might want to lay any 0-0 or draw come the 75th minute.

19:45 - Nottingham Forest v Barnsley - 2.72 Barnsley

  • Nottingham Forest are safe from relegation. Barnsley are in the bottom 3 and need a win.

Nottm Forest (17th)

  • 4 losses and a win last 5 matches. Thankfully not critical.
  • Only 1 loss in 5 at home.
  • 0-0-0-0-0-0-2-1 goals scored recently.
  • 2-1, 3-2, 2-0, 0-1 at home v 20th and lower.

Barnsley (22nd)

  • Must win.
  • Only 2 wins in 17 matches.
  • 4 consecutive away defeats.
  • Conceded in their last 10 matches.
  • Only 2 wins away v top 21.
  • Those wins were the only time Barnsley scored 2+ goals.
  • 21 of 32 goals conceded away came 1st half.

Conclusions

  • Another match featuring an unmotivated side v an extremely motivated side.
  • Strictly on form, Forest's 3 wins v 20th and lower has them favourite. Add that to Barnsley's only 2 wins away v top 21 sides and it is a strong case for the home side not to lose.
  • .....Ordinarily! This is a relegation six pointer. More examples came last night from Levante who needed a win to help secure their La Liga future and got it.
  • Forest had a run of 6 matches without scoring but have managed 3 goals in 2 matches now. They play a Barnsley conceding in their last 10 away.
  • Barnsley will need 2 goals you feel today to secure a win. 1-1, 1-2 appeals to me given the 1-1's Barnsley have had away v teams around Forest's position in the league.

19:45 - Liverpool v Roma - 1.5 Liverpool

  • This is a Champions League semi-final first leg.

Liverpool

  • Recent form home and away - only loss in 15 matches was v Man Utd.
  • Recent form at home - only 1 loss in 21 home matches was a 2-3 loss in the FA Cup to West Brom.
  • Champions league form home and away - unbeaten in 14 matches. 2 wins v Man City.
  • Champions League form at home - unbeaten in 7 at home. 4 consecutive clean sheets.

Roma

  • Recent form home and away - 3 wins in 7, one was v Barcelona.
  • Recent form away - Draw, Loss, Draw, Win last 4 away. The win v SPAL. Poor relative form.
  • Champions league form home and away - 3 losses in 10 matches came away v Atl Madrid, Shakhtar, and Barcelona. Beat the likes of Chelsea 3-0 at home and Barcelona 3-0 at home.
  • Champions League form away - only 1 win in 15. Historically poor travellers.

Conclusions

  • On form, Liverpool expected not to lose. Their wins v Man City particularly eye-catching.
  • Roma are in poor form away and away in the Champions League. Their redemption you feel wll come at home where they have beaten all comers including a famous 3-0 v Barcelona. Liverpool be warned 2nd leg.
  • 4 consecutive clean sheets for Liverpool must see them favourites today. I will wait for 2nd leg and take on the first leg winner in the to qualify market!

TENNIS

It's a quiet day today so I want to exercise my tennis-research muscles. I cannot possibly call every match correctly so please note that. There is also limited clay court form (ultra recent) for these players. Standout matches?
Wozniacki; Sousa; Parmentier should not lose; Goffin (rankings difference). I have a bit of work to do through the day but if I can follow the tennis I'll be tweeting @drtclub.

WTA Istanbul - CLAY

Please remember that tennis times are fluid so I have not included them here.

Dalila Jakupovic v Irina-Camelia Begu - 1.59 Begu

  • 186th v 43rd.
  • 0-1 head to heads 2008 pretty irrelevant here.
  • Dalila - semi finals on clay in Bogota. qualifiers to get here.
  • Begu 3 round on clay in Charleston. All 2 setters.
  • In her last 6 tournaments, not gone past 2nd round (hard).
  • Nothing strong to get my teeth into. Note the large rankings gap, enough to lay a Dalila 1st set lead?

Yulia Putintseva v Sorana Cirstea - 1.88 Cirstea

  • 51st v 37th.
  • Cirstea won the most recent 2 head to heads one on clay in a 3 setter.
  • Quarters in Taipei for Ylia but 1st, 2nd, 1st, 1st round exits since.
  • 3 3 setters in 4 matches.
  • Cirstea has met toughies recently, losing to Venus, Hsieh, Muguruza. 9 consecutive 2 setters.
  • I feel this could be a 3 setter so lay the first set winner.

Viktoriya Tomova v Valentyna Ivakhnenko - 1.66 Ivak

  • 146th v 197th suggests a tight match.
  • Ivakhnenko 2-0 head to heads on clay 2015 and 2017 were both 3 setters.
  • Both players through qualifiers to get here and similar hard court form.
  • Little to work with. 3 setter with a bias towards laying Tomova if Tomova wins first set?

Ayla Aksu v Pauline Parmentier - 1.35 Parmentier

  • 229th v 80th.
  • Ayla qualifier here - Turkish girl in Turkey.
  • Straight set Parmentier head to head 2017.
  • Ayla is predominantly a 25K circuit player. Wild Card here I think.
  • Parmentier 10 losses in her last 11 matches - failed to get out of qualifiers for Miami Masters - poor run on hard.
  • 3 3 setters in 4 on clay. Took Wozza to 3 sets on clay so may be better suited.
  • Should be 2-0 Parmentier so lay Alyla if she wins first set.

Danka Kovinic v Anna Kalinskaya - 1.92 Danka

  • Usually odds like these default to laying first set winner.
  • 122nd v 162nd.
  • Both through qualifying to get here.
  • I will lay first set winner in lieu of strong form from either player.

Arantxa Rus v Shuai Zhang - 1.82

  • 136th v 35th - quite a difference in rankings.
  • No head to heads.
  • Rus through qualifiers.
  • Failed to get through qualifiers on clay in Lugano.
  • In 10 of 11 clay tournaments last year, Zhang did not get past 2nd round. Clay not her forte?
  • Lay first set winner here? Preferable Zhang first set winner as clay does not seem to be her bag.

Agnieszka Radwanska v Donna Vekic - 1.56 Rad

  • 28th v 54th.
  • No H2H.
  • Did beat Halep in Miami on hard Aggy but had a poor hard campaign.
  • Her clay has tended to be focussed on Roland Garros.
  • 3 3 setters in 4 for Vekic.
  • Seems competitive albeit 2017 clay tournaments, Vekic had 2 3 setters and a couple of 2 setters going to 7-5.
  • A hint we can lay Aggy if she wins first set. Not especially expecting Vekic to win 2nd set but at least make it competitive (7-5).

Aryna Sabalenka v Polona Hercog - 1.64 Aryna

  • 73rd v 101st.
  • Aryna head to head straight sets earlier this year.
  • A good start to the clay season for Aryna reaching the final in Lugano, and beating Hercog along the way.
  • Round of 32 and round of 16 for Hercog on clay recently.
  • The market looks right. Lay Hercog if she wins first set.

Maria Sakkari v Cagla Buyukakcay - 1.43 Maria

  • 52nd v 161st.
  • 3 setter on hard 2016 went to Sakkari.
  • Last year's clay season saw 3 3 setters for Sakkari in 4 matches.
  • Cagla is a Turk in Turkey - lower ranked but keen to impress at home I am sure. She has failed to get out of qualifiers in 4 of her last 5 Tournaments.
  • We may see a home player put up some resistance but rankings and Sakkari's better recent form, albeit on hard, should see her through.

Caroline Wozniacki v Ekaterina Alexandrova - 1.12 Wozza

  • Quite simply, no matter what troubles Wozza may be in, back her to win the match. She has been 2-1 sets down, 5-1 down 3rd set and 30-0 down not on serve and still won the match - Aussie Open earlier this season.

ATP Barcelona - CLAY

Andreas Haider-Maurer v Roberto Carballes Baena - 1.23 Baena

  • 445th v 107th.
  • Baena won last head to head 2017.
  • Maurer predominantly Challenger tour.
  • Recent stints on clay have seen 2 set losse outside of Challenger tour.
  • Baena lost Monte Carlo Challenger when 1.43.
  • Baena clearly limited but the rankings really should see him win.

Ivo Karlovic v Roberto Bautista Agut - 1.4 Agut

  • 80th v 20th.
  • 3 7-6 sets to Ivo the last time these 2 met in 2017.
  • Semi's for Ivo in Houston and a 3 setter first round win v Robredo.
  • 10 of the last 13 clay matches have been 3 setters for Ivo.
  • Agut lasted 3 rounds in Monte Carlo, losing to Goffin.
  • The value is in laying an Agut first set win if he wins first set. Ivo tends towards 3 setters on clay.

Martin Klizan v Federico Delbonis - 1.77 Klizan

  • 143rd v 68th.
  • Last head to heads 2015 3-2 to Klizan but Del won the last 2.
  • Klizan been on Challenger tour recently on clay.
  • Semis at Buenos Aires, only 2 rounds Rio, and Sao Paulo (3 setter defeat).
  • Tough to call.

David Goffin v Marcel Granollers - 1.3 Goffin

  • 7th v 177th.
  • Granollers won last head to head 2-0 on clay Monte Carlo 2016.
  • Goff quarters Monte Carlo this year.
  • 9 7-5 or 7-6 set matches in the last 7 clay matches albeit 2017 for the Goff suggests he may be tested.
  • Generally a challenger player now Granollers.
  • The value is in laying Goffin if he wins first set. Not sure that will produce a profit but he has struggled with 7-5 and 7-6 sets on clay. Do note though the rankings differential should see 2-0 the Goff.

Peter Gojowczyk v Guido Pella - 1.33 Pella

  • 60th v 64th.
  • 3 set win on hard Peter 2017.
  • Both players dumped out of Monte Carlo in the round of 64.
  • Quarters for Pella Houston includes win v Querrey.
  • 3 consecutive 3 setters Pella on clay tells us to lay Pella if he wins first set.
  • I don't see any significant form for Peter so perhaps lay first set winner here - ultra short odds Peter if he wins first set.
  • Tight rankings too.

Ilya Ivashka v Gilles Simon - 1.72 Simon

  • 231st v 89th.
  • No strong form lines for me.

Feliciano Lopez v Dusan Lajovic - 1.81 Lopez

  • Lopez was a really reliable player last year during the summer.
  • 36th v 75th.
  • 3 set win for Dusan 2017 on hard.All 3 head to heads have been 3 setters.
  • 6 consecutive clay 3 setters ended with a 6-3-7-6 loss to top 20 Agut for Lopez.
  • No chance for Dusan Monte Carlo facing Novak first round.
  • Look for a 3 setter? Lay the first set winner?

Bjorn Fratangelo v Alexey Vatutin - 1.71 Fratangelo

  • 111th v 180th.
  • Both players through qualifiers to get here.
  • Quarters on clay recently for Vatutin in Casablanca.
  • Bjorn is a largely Challenger tour player on clay as is Vatutin bar that Casablanca good run.
  • recent clay form is with Vatutin. Lay Bjorn if first set winner?

Jaume Munar v Joao Sousa - 1.57 Sousa

  • 57th Sousa. No ranking showing for Munar.
  • Munar is a Challenger tour player so hard to quantify.
  • Semi's in Casablanca on clay for Sousa and recent hard court winning form over the likes of Zverev and Goffin suggests I must be with Sousa today.

Ernesto Escobedo v Malek Jaziri - 1.77 Ernesto

  • 120th v 98th.
  • No head to heads.
  • Ernesto has failed to get out of qualifiers in 2 of last 3 tournaments.
  • He did get through qualifiers here.
  • 5 consecutive clay losses prior to this tournament for Ernesto.
  • Quarters in Casablanca for Malek is good - losing to Kyle Edmund.
  • Ernesto looks vulnerable on clay. Lay him if first set winner.

Pablo Cuevas v Adrian Mannarino - 1.36 Cuevas

  • 32nd v 28th so rankings suggest tighter match.
  • Cuevas has won the 2 head to heads.
  • Quarters and Semis recently on clay for Cuevas in South America. He is Uruguayan so should favour clay.
  • Cuevas recent win on this surface in Rome last year suggests the market is right here.