Sunday marks the first day of third-round action from Tennis Paradise.
I have my eye on a pair of bets from the men’s draw, including one lopsided tilt where the spread doesn’t quite go far enough.
Let’s get into it!
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ATP Indian Wells Odds, Picks
Andrey Rublev (-400) vs Ugo Humbert (+285)
What a sensational performance from Andrey Rublev in his second-round clash with Jiri Lehecka on Friday night.
Last year’s semifinalist came out hot and was dominant behind his first serve and plus-one forehand combination. In fact, the Russian won 35 of 50 points on serve in the match (70%), with nearly half of those points lost coming in a two-game stretch at the beginning of the second set.
Rublev clearly likes these conditions as he possesses the power to hit through the conditions, the athleticism to grind matches out, and enough spin to play with the margin necessary to win.
Ugo Humbert, on the other hand, should be applauded for his patience against an erratic and clearly-frustrated Denis Shapovalov. However, Humbert didn’t do much to inspire confidence heading into a matchup with one of the tour’s best players.
He actually trailed by a break in each set, but was the beneficiary of 14 double faults from the Canadian — many in consolidation games and to set up or convert break points.
With Humbert playing a rather bland match and playing with a very flat style — without much movement — it’s no wonder he doesn’t traditionally do well on slower courts.
One has to admire his run to the third round here, but the gulf between him and Rublev in these conditions is too stark, and I’m happy to back Rublev to cover this spread.
Picks: Rublev -3.5 (-130 via DraftKings)
Jordan Thompson (-135) vs Alejandro Tabilo (+118)
Talk about a match with the wrong man favored.
Yes, Jordan Thompson beat one of the top seeds in Stefanos Tsitsipas as a +450 underdog in the second round.
Some food for thought on that win, though. For starters, Tsitsipas made it well known he was playing this tournament with no expectations of doing well as he’s still recovering from a shoulder injury.
Secondly, he couldn’t hit more than a few backhands that weren’t sliced. Without being able to use that block return against Thompson’s serve, he was almost drawing dead on return. In fact, there were just three breaks in 34 service games. The odd part? They all came in succession to open the second set.
Thompson had his chances early, but actually looked like the second-best player in the match in the final two sets.
Throw in the fact that he has never been known to fare well in slower conditions and I’m not sure why he’s getting so much respect here for beating a banged up world No. 3.
As for Alejandro Tabilo, the Chilean is fresh off an upset of big-serving American Maxime Cressy in the second round.
Tabilo had a few hiccups trying to close that one out in the second of two tiebreaks, but he got the job done, and probably doesn’t get enough credit for his hard-court play.
Capable on hard courts, but coming from South America and being used to clay, Tabilo is well equipped for success at Indian Wells.
He’s comfortable in these conditions, can hit a big lefty serve and forehand, but can also play both those shots with spin — something his Australian counterpart may not like, considering he prefers lower bounces and quicker courts.
Pick: Tabilo Moneyline (+118 via FanDuel)
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