ATP Tennis Betting: Back-to-form Seppi offers underdog value against Kyrgios in Zhuhai

September 24, 2019

We got off to a good start on Tuesday when our 2.45 chance Pablo Andujar roared back from a set down to lose only three further games in the match against Steve Johnson.

Aside from that it wasn’t really the kind of day for underdogs that I’d expected, with only Zhizen Zhang and Andujar (plus late entrant Lloyd Harris) upsetting the favourites on Tuesday.

Zhe Li played the sort of match that I hoped he might against Egor Gerasimov and won 71% of his second serve points, but Gerasimov’s bigger serving (10 aces from a 71% first serve and 74% first serve points won) gave him the edge by just nine points overall in that one.

The weather looks a lot better in Chengdu on Wednesday than it was on Tuesday, with a dry, sunny day in prospect at 26C and around 50% humidity.

At first glance, the favourites that look the most opposable on Wednesday include: Nick Kyrgios, Lucas Pouille, Gael Monfils, and Denis Shapovalov.

Nick Kyrgios – in typical fashion – posted a social media update of him swigging from a bottle of lager, while not bothering to answer a journalists’ question at Laver Cup, stating that to be akin to his enthusiasm for the Asian swing.

We’ve seen this before from NK at this time of the year, where he barely bothers to break sweat in China, but he’s also won here and made finals, so who knows how he’ll shape up this week?

NK is one of several coming over from Laver Cup and playing either Wednesday or Thursday and the other issue with Kyrgios is fitness after withdrawing from duty in the Laver Cup – an event he often says he loves.

“I’ve been feeling my collar bone for the last week and I think the amount I played [on Saturday], the occasion, the pressure, I guess it was just a little bit too much for my body,” Kyrgios said.

That doesn’t bode well for a long week in Chengdu if he can’t play for more than 110 minutes without it being too much and opponent Andreas Seppi has caused NK many problems in the past.

Seppi comes here on the back of winning the Cary Challenger just over a week ago, so his confidence should be at a decent level and on his two matches against NK on these types of hard courts in Melbourne (won one in five sets and lost one in five sets).

Indeed, Seppi tends to play his best stuff in fast conditions, and now that he seems back to fitness after his usual summer hip iniltration, this looks winnable for the Italian in the circumstances

I’m not often keen to bet in a Kyrgios match, but there looks affair opportunity for value here, so I’ll have a small investment on Seppi at around the 2.50 mark.

My concern with Seppi is that his record as underdog is pretty poor in this sort of price range, with a 7-22 (2-8 on outdoor hard) win/loss mark when priced as a 2.40 to 2.59 underdog, so just a small bet here.

Elsewhere in Zhuhai, Lucas Pouille is a busy man at the moment, entering a tournament every week until the end of the season and he doesn’t sound too sure of his condition:

“Arrived in Zhuhai for the @ZhuhaiChampions yesterday! Hoping to first win my battle against jet lag and then many more on the courts,” he posted on social media.

He faces what will probably be a more motivated opponent (Pouille is coming from a home event in France last week, where he made the semis) in Soon-Woo Kwon, who’s come through qualies this week.

Kwon has shown a good level lately, but his price is too short for me in this one.

Fellow Frenchman, Gael Monfils, has a weak record in China of zero semi finals, a 10-8 win/loss mark, and he’s lost four of his last five matches in this country.

He was beaten by Lloyd Harris in Chengdu last year and I’m not convinced that we’ll see the best of him this week, but it’s hard to find many other reasons to bet on the inconsistent Cameron Norrie to beat Monfils.

He doesn’t tend to lose to many lefties on hard courts, with big-hitters Verdasco, Nadal, Klizan and Lopez the only ones to have taken down Monfils on a hard court since Donald Young in 2011 in Bangkok.

Norrie’s line and length game doesn’t strike me as the sort of style that will worry Monfils at all, but if Gael doesn’t fancy it he could well struggle.

Talking of lefties, Denis Shapovalov is perhaps one that we could take on against Ricardas Berankis, who beat Shapo at Wimbledon a few months ago in straight sets as a 5.65 chance.

I have a sneaking feeling that it might be too fast for Shapo here in Chengdu and he’s coming here from Laver Cup, so there are doubts about the young Canadian, whose form has been patchy at best this season.

He talked after that Berankis loss about needing to have someone to talk to “that’s been there before” and he’s got that now in Mikhail Youzhny, so I’m not sure that this price of 2.80 on Berankis is great value.

The extra day off due to the rain in Chengdu may well have helped Joao Sousa’s cause against Hyeon Chung and Sousa is perhaps worth considering now as a 2.60 shot in this one.

Best Bet


0.5 points win Seppi to beat Kyrgios at 2.50