AUSTRALIAN OPEN – DAY 2
After Rafael Nadal’s easy win in the first round yesterday, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Alexander Zverev will be keen to make similar statements. Here we cast our eye over each player’s opening match.
Although the Fed Express is expected to brush aside his opponent in straight sets, the Swiss certainly won’t be taking anything for granted. His opponent has a world ranking of 51 and has shown an ability to compete with the very best. In fact, the Slovenian provided Dominic Thiem with a stern test (5-7, 4-6) in Qatar earlier this month and has a respectable career record on hard court of 36-43.
Key Stat: Federer hasn’t lost in the opening round of a Grand Slam since 2003.
Our tip: Federer to win with the first set to be under 8.5 games.
There won’t be many out there willing to back Italian Thomas Fabbiano into a surprise win over World No.4 Alexander Zverev. The powerful German enters this tournmant with plenty of expectation after beating Federer in the Canadian Open in August of last year. Still, Zverev has only reached the 4th round of a grand slam once and was bundled out in the French Open in the 1st Round last year, providing his opponent with some hope of at least winning a set.
Key Stat: Thomas Fabbiano’s career win/loss record is 9-29 whilst Zverev’s is 117-70.
Our tip: Zverev to win and take out the first set 6-0 or 6-1.
Although Novak Djokovic had a year to forget by his lofty standards in 2017, the Serbian is still a major contender in this tournament and he’ll be hopeful of a quick win in the Round 1. However, Donald Young could be a tricky opponent for the World No. 14 and there is plenty of value to be had if you’re willing to back the Amercan to win a set. This pairing has met twice previously in competition with the last match a four-setter in the 2017 US Open. In that fixture, Young won the first in a tie break and if you’re keen to back a similar result here, you’ll pick up $4.50+ odds.
Key Stat: Across his entire career, Novak Djokoovic has lost almost 33% of matches to left handers.
Our tip: Djokovic to win with the first set to be over 9.5 games.