Steve’s ATP Belgrade Qualifying Previews x 2

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Two quick previews for Belgrade to kick off the day, and I am still considering a larger play on the Petrovic/Millman match a little later today.

Sousa vs Rinderknech

After what can only be described as a horror run since the tour resumed in the latter half of last year, are we finally starting to see signs that Joao Sousa is turning things around?

This is a really interesting match-up from an odds perspective. First up with have Arthur Rinderknech, who put together some very impressive tennis to start the year on indoor hardcourt. This included making the quarter final in Marseille, where he lost to Humbert in 3 sets. The big question is will this form continue and translate over to the clay?

Rinderknech holds a 41-29 record on clay for his career, with only one meeting against a Top 100 player. He is 1-3 vs Top 150 players on clay, with the one win yesterday against Sugita, who is well and truly unsuited by the clay. There is too much being assumed here in the odds for my liking.

You know what you are going to get with Sousa when he steps on the clay. He can cover the court well, limit his errors (for the most part), and is capable of producing passing shots off both wings, with no significant weakness. To have him at $1.90 in this one looks to be a little too long for my liking. I have missed the top price which would have been a larger staking, however there is still enough value in it for a 2 unit selection.

Suggested Bet

2 units Sousa to defeat Rinderknech at $1.90 at Bet365

Carballes Baena vs Cerundolo

RCB looks to be a little too long here against Cerundolo, especially with Cerundolo coming off the majority of his form being displayed in South America.

This is a crucial opportunity for both players, as they both sit just outside the Top 100 at present. My big question mark at times with RCB is that in the wrong conditions (when things are a little faster), he can find himself outgunned against some of the bigger strikers of the ball. This won’t be the case today, with RCB coming off a title in Belgrade at Challenger level last week, and up against Cerundolo who beat Kovalik in the 2-set match that featured 12 breaks of serve from 28 opportunities. Cerundolo had only 4 service games for the match where he either didn’t face a break point or find himself broken, and against a better return of serve in RCB today I don’t see a lot changing. This looks to be a decent price for RCB and I am more than happy to attack with a 2 unit selection.

Suggested Bet

2 units RCB to defeat Cerundolo at $2.37 at Bet365