Simon vs. Anderson / ATP Pune – French G. Simon and South African K. Anderson will fight for the first ever title of the ATP Pune. Both players turned the result up-side down in the semi-finals; Simon managed to annul backlog of one set against M. Cilic, while Anderson did the same in match with B. Paire. Begins: 06.01.2018 – 12:30 CET
Despite being described as underdog G. Simon has nevertheless managed to reach the final of tournament in Pune, where he outplayed indisposed Croatian player M. Cilic. We have to be a bit sarcastic about Cilic, but it seemed that he forgot during the winter break that is necessary to win two sets in order to win. The Croatian player fulfilled expectations only in the first set which he won in just 28 minutes and losing just one game.
However, in continuation of match Simon was the one who dominated, while Cilic’s first serve failed him miserably. That can be best seen through statistics that says Cilic’s first serve was at mere 48% in the second set. Simon knew how to use all those chances and he had an upper hand after the first serve, while Cilic won majority of his points only immediately after the first set, which as it can be seen didn’t work as it supposed to.
In previous period Anderson struggled to overcome injury but near the end of season he finally managed and he ended the year as World’s no. 14. Anderson made the best result of his career in 2015 when he occupied 10th place in the ATP rank list. He won three ATP titles in his career out of which the last one in 2015 when he won the title in Winston-Salem. Objectively, number of won titles should have been much bigger as Anderson is very good players who was regular in finishes of almost all stronger tournaments lately.
One of best examples is last year’s final of US Open where Anderson put up a solid resistance to favoured R. Nadal. To reach the final of tournament in Pune Anderson had to defeat B. Paire in the semi-final and he needed three sets to accomplish that. The French played well till the end of second set but after that he didn’t have enough strength to play equally good the third and decisive set. Paire took the lead after tie-break in the first set but he lost the second one in the same way. Anderson was simply too strong in the third set, especially when he served as 1st serve was 87%.
G. Simon – K. Anderson PICK
Anderson won all three previous matches between him and Simon. The two of them played the last one in Tokyo last season and Anderson won 6-2, 7-6. There is no doubt that Anderson is great favourite to win again but that was Cilic also in the semi-final. Simon wasn’t in top shape in previous year but he is experienced enough player to put up a decent resistance in match that decides who wins the title.
Pick: Simon +4.5 games
Odds: 1.57 at sportingbet (down to 1.54 can be played)
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