Winner, winner, chicken dinner! Jarry was a no sweat truck, Zverev and FAA both survived and produced enough sweat to more than make up for Jarry. Finally, a good day all around.
Bankroll looks ugly but, as I’ve said many times there’s so many bad beats in there and retirements are 1-9 against me this season. Things will turn.
Also, importantly, FAA and Zverev, both outrights go today in finals. Let’s get it done!
The French Open preview is up at @bangthebook if you are a fan of the written word and the @ballboyztennis podcast is up if you are a fan of audio. Check them both out, Slams are always good content.
So, my line predicting matrix, which I am admittedly still a long way from perfecting, obviously has some issues. I advised a mid-tournament future on Zverev at +100 because of two reasons - one, all three other big seeds went out in their first match and Zverev’s price only dropped from +137 to +100, this despite the fact that there was now a massive chance he would not face someone in the top 70 en route to this title. Second, I lined his three remaining matches at -600 for Garin (line was already available), -500 versus ARV or Delbo and -400 versus Jarry. +100 felt like ‘value’. Well, what do I know? I’ve known for a while that I don’t properly rate recent form and this scenario spelled that out to me. Zverev closed -200 against Delbo and he’ll probably close -225 versus Jarry. I was way off. Work to do on the burgeoning ‘model’. The good news is I (and anyone who tailed) have +100 on Jarry and he is -225 in the final, so, there’s hedging that can be done if you want to make money on this. I’m going to trust in Zverev. He has certainly shown this week that he is still not right, whatever ‘right’ may be. He dropped the second set to both Delbo and Dellien and seems to be spraying errors all over the court. The base stats don’t look horrible - he laid down 17 and 15 aces against Dellien and Delbo, served 67% on first serves in both matches, and he won 55% of the points vs Delbo (Dellien was basically 50/50 and he was lucky to survive). I think he still finds a way to get this done today. He should survive on experience alone. Zverev has ten titles on tour already, many much bigger than a 250 in Switzerland, and another 6 finals appearances. This should be just another match for him. Conversely, this is Jarry’s second final. If Zverev’s path has been easy, well, Jarry’s has been too. He hasn’t dropped a set but, the only top 70 players he faced were Ebden and Albot, two guys who hardly love clay. Jarry hasn’t dropped a set, has only been broken two times, and is showing a career best ability to break serve. If I was more confident n my totals betting, I would recommend the over here. The tiebreak = yes prop is also lined at -110 which is probably a good bet too. I’m going to avoid it all and just cheer for AZ. One thing to look at would be if Jarry looks good, and say, Zverev eeks out a tiebreak win in the first set (for all his troubles Zverev hasn’t dropped a first set yet this week) you may want to a few dollars on Jarry at a big number to hedge off the Zverev future. That should be easy enough to even out if Zverev is like -600 up one set.
Oh boy, am I nervous about this one. Lined almost at a pick’em, Paire is cruising and FAA, like Zverev is playing tight, close matches. Paire, admittedly had to come back in a third set tiebreak against Shapo but, he destroyed Fritz in the semis. Paire has also been to six finals, including three on clay, and has won a clay title this year. He should be plenty comfortable and confident today. Felix meanwhile is in final number two, although, like Paire, it’s his second already in 2019. On the face of it, statistically, Paire should be the favorite. He has better combined hold/break numbers every year for the last three years and obviously much more experience. Felix, to argue his case, already has a better career winning percentage on clay than Paire and maybe importantly for today, already has a winning tiebreak record. That is rare amoung young players and it came in handy in the second set against Basil yesterday. I don’t think either player will be looking ahead and this should be another match where the over would be a good bet. The tiebreak = yes is lined at +100 and that feels like a good possibility as well. I have $50 to win $400 on FAA at 8/1 from pre-tournament and could just throw a $100 on Paire at close to even money and put my feet up. But, like Zverev, I’ll at least see how this match starts before I dive in on Paire. Fingers crossed.