ATP Tennis Betting: Thiem the right favourite for Tour Finals title clash with Tsitsipas

November 17, 2019

It’s been a disappointing end to the season, with several bets that were decent value foiled, and that was the case again on Saturday when Roger Federer failed with 11 of 12 break chances against Stefanos Tsitsipas.

I said yesterday that I wondered if Federer would be able to stay at the level he showed against Novak Djokovic and the answer was ‘no’, as the Swiss failed with a slew of chances.

That foiled my set one tie break bet, but although things haven’t fallen my way this past few weeks it’s still been a successful season overall, despite the amount of losses in finals and semi finals in 2019.

And I won’t be investing much of this season’s profit in Sunday’s encounter in a tournament that’s now seen nine underdogs win and eight matches have an opening set of more than 10.5 games (typically, there was another yesterday, but the wrong one for us), breaking the previous tournament records.

So, it’s Dominic Thiem versus Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Tour Finals title match at 18:00 UK time on Sunday and the prices look about right in this one, with Thiem slight favourite.

This pair have clashed on six prior occasions in their careers, with the last one taking place just over a month ago on slow outdoor hard at night in Beijing at the China Open.

And that match was probably the one where we saw the ‘new’ version of Thiem on a hard court for the first time, with the Austrian coming to the net more and being much more aggressive than he was previously comfortable with.

Thiem was a set and a break down in that one before roaring back to win it in style with a fine display of aggressive tennis that was too much for Tsitsipas to deal with and Thiem called it “one of the best matches I've played in my life.”

And Thiem’s been doing that ever since, with rushes to the net becoming much more of a feature of his game on hard courts, with success coming very quickly for him.

The main difference between this pair on their main level stats of the last three months is in the return of serve department, where Thiem is a fair bit stronger, breaking 21.6% of the time versus 16% for Tsitsipas.

On serve they’re very similar, with Thiem holding 85.4% of the time and Tsitsipas 86.1% of the time, but Thiem has won 16 of his 20 matches in that timeframe, while Tsitsipas is 15-7.

If we look only at matches versus the players I have in my database as ‘top-10 quality’ in the last three months the stats are very much in Thiem’s favour.

He’s 4-0 win/loss, with a hold/break total of 113.2 (86.8% holds/26.4% breaks), which is impressive indeed, while Tsitsipas is 5-5 win/loss and with a hold/break total of 97.4 (82.8% holds/14.6% breaks).

The head-to-head on hard courts perhaps isn’t that relevant now that Thiem has significantly changed his style of play on the faster courts, but he’s held 81.2% of the time against Tsitsipas, who’s held 75.8% of the time versus Thiem.

Interestingly, five of their last six head-to-head clashes have featured a first set score of either 6-3 or 6-2, while six of the 10 opening sets in finals at the O2 have ended 6-3, so I’m interested in a small wager on 6-3 to Thiem in set one at a very big 25-1 in this one.

Six of the 10 Tour Finals title matches have ended in two sets and Thiem 2-0 at 3.65 appeals, but I’m happy to just have a small wager at a big price here to end the season with.


Best Bet


0.5 points win Thiem to win set one 6-3 at 26.0