<![CDATA[Tennis RSS Feed]]> en 120 <![CDATA[Fernando Verdasco vs. Steve Darcis 2017 Antalya Open Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/28/fernando-verdasco-vs-steve-darcis-2017-antalya-open-pick-odds-prediction#comments Fernando Verdasco and Steve Darcis meet in the 2017 Antalya Open.

Fernando Verdasco will play just his second match on grass after losing to Kei Nishikori in Halle in three tight sets. Verdasco has had an up-and-down season overall that includes a final appearance in Dubai, but he's played just one match since making the fourth round in the French Open. Verdasco has to get back to being effective with his serve, as he's been broken 12 times in his last three matches and is coming off a match in which he struggled mightily with his second serve.…

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Fernando Verdasco and Steve Darcis meet in the 2017 Antalya Open.

Fernando Verdasco will play just his second match on grass after losing to Kei Nishikori in Halle in three tight sets. Verdasco has had an up-and-down season overall that includes a final appearance in Dubai, but he's played just one match since making the fourth round in the French Open. Verdasco has to get back to being effective with his serve, as he's been broken 12 times in his last three matches and is coming off a match in which he struggled mightily with his second serve. We know what Verdasco is capable of when hitting his spots, and I’m sure hed love to get a victory or two before the Wimbledon to provide some confidence. Verdasco has lost his last three matches on grass court.

Steve Darcis is coming off a three sets win over Denis Istomin that took 33 games to decide. In the victory, Darcis won 77 percent of his first serve points and 44 percent of his second serve points. Darcis is coming off his first grass victory since the 2014 Wimbledon and hopes to win the second match of a tournament for the first time since the Bordeaux Challenger. Darcis got 70 percent of his first serves in play in his last match, and he gives himself a chance to win when that's the case. The problem with Darcis is that he hasn't had much success on the return in any recent tournament and it's been his downfall big time on grass court. Darcis has lost five of his last six matches on grass court.

These two have played twice in the past, and Verdasco won both meetings. The most recent match was in the 2012 French Open, a match Verdasco won in straight sets. Both matches were decided in straight sets.

The fact Darcis has struggle mightily on grass and hasn't had much success on the return in any of his matches should make Verdasco feel good. Verdasco should have little trouble winning this match as long as he manages his unforced errors and just keeps the ball in play. Don't force the issue and get out of character against a player in Darcis who hasn't proven he can make a deep tournament run on grass.

I like Verdasco to win this match in straight sets just like their previous two matches.

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Mon, 26 Jun 2017 14:44:35 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88374
<![CDATA[Novak Djokovic vs. Vasek Pospisil 2017 Eastbourne International Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/28/novak-djokovic-vs-vasek-pospisil-2017-eastbourne-international-pick-odds-prediction#comments Novak Djokovic and Vasek Pospisil meet in the round of 16 in the 2017 Eastbourne International.

Novak Djokovic will play his first match on grass court this season after not playing since the quarterfinals of the French Open. Djokovic has shown signs of getting his form back, but then he sprinkles in those performances where he struggles with his serve and looks like a shell of himself. Djokovic is still 22-7 this year in the main draw, which isn't too shabby for most players, but you get the feeling his opponents no longer fear him on the tennis…

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Novak Djokovic and Vasek Pospisil meet in the round of 16 in the 2017 Eastbourne International.

Novak Djokovic will play his first match on grass court this season after not playing since the quarterfinals of the French Open. Djokovic has shown signs of getting his form back, but then he sprinkles in those performances where he struggles with his serve and looks like a shell of himself. Djokovic is still 22-7 this year in the main draw, which isn't too shabby for most players, but you get the feeling his opponents no longer fear him on the tennis court and think they can beat him, which wasn't the case a year ago. Djokovic has to get the ball rolling here in order to build some momentum heading into the Wimbledon next week. Djokovic has won 15 of his last 16 matches on grass court.

Vasek Pospisil is coming off a straight sets win over Jiri Vesely that took 19 games to decide. In the victory, Pospisil won 85 percent of his first serve points and 56 percent of his second serve points. Pospisil has yet to lose a set this tournament and is coming off a match in which he won 72 percent of his return points. If Pospisil continues to see the serve well and is keeping the ball in play, he gives himself a chance to make an even deeper tournament run. Pospisil is now 9-2 in grass court matches this season and has to be confident heading into this match despite just four career wins over top-10 players. Pospisil has won eight of his last 10 matches on grass court.

These two have played four times and Djokovic has won all four meetings. The most recent match was in the 2016 Shanghai Masters, a match Djokovic won in straight sets. Pospisil has never won a set against Djokovic.

Pospisil is playing well and has a chance to win this match with help from a subpar Djokovic. However, there's zero success for Pospisil in past meetings against Djokovic, and you know Djokovic wants to win this match considering he needs some matches on grass before the Wimbledon.

I like Djokovic to win this match in straight sets.

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Mon, 26 Jun 2017 14:05:06 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88389
<![CDATA[Marin Cilic vs. Feliciano Lopez 2017 Aegon Championships Final Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/25/marin-cilic-vs-feliciano-lopez-2017-aegon-championships-final-pick-odds-prediction#comments Marin Cilic and Feliciano Lopez meet in the final of the 2017 Aegon Championships.

Marin Cilic is coming off a three sets win over Gilles Muller that took 31 games to decide. In the victory, Cilic won 91 percent of his first serve points and 58 percent of his second serve points. Cilic continues to put a lot of pressure on his opponent with his serve and has dropped a combined nine first serve points in his last two matches. Cilic has been broken just once this tournament and has provided just two break chances overall. When Cilic’s serve is clicking…

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Marin Cilic and Feliciano Lopez meet in the final of the 2017 Aegon Championships.

Marin Cilic is coming off a three sets win over Gilles Muller that took 31 games to decide. In the victory, Cilic won 91 percent of his first serve points and 58 percent of his second serve points. Cilic continues to put a lot of pressure on his opponent with his serve and has dropped a combined nine first serve points in his last two matches. Cilic has been broken just once this tournament and has provided just two break chances overall. When Cilic’s serve is clicking the way it is right now, he's one of the tougher players on tour to beat. Cilic hopes to win his second title of the season and his 18th for his career. Cilic is 1-1 in final appearances on grass. Cilic has also won seven of his last nine final appearances overall. Cilic has won 10 of his last 12 matches on grass court.

Feliciano Lopez is coming off a three sets win over Grigor Dimitrov that took 29 games to decide. In the victory, Lopez won 87 percent of his first serve points and 53 percent of his second serve points. Lopez has also beens harp with his serve and is coming off a match in which he lost just six first serve points. Lopez’s second serve hasn't been as effective, but he's been broken just once this tournament and has forced his opponent to play a near perforcent match to win. Lopez hopes to win his first tile of the season and first since the 2016 Swiss Open. Lopez is 2-2 in his career in final appearances on grass and has lost five of his last seven final appearances overall. Lopez is 5-11 in his career in final appearances overall. Lopez has won eight of his last nine matches on grass court.

These two have played seven times in the past and Cilic has won five of those meetings. The most recent match was in this year's French Open, a match Cilic won in straight sets. Lopez’s last win over Cilic came in the 2010 Rome Masters. This will be their third meeting on grass.

There’s no betting against Cilic right now with the way he's serving. It's just that simple. Also, has an extremely quick turnaround for this match after playing three training sets and having things end far later than expected due to a rain delay. Fatigue will play a factor here, giving Cilic an even bigger advantage.

Look for Cilic to win his second title of the 2017 season.

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Sat, 24 Jun 2017 14:39:24 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88290
<![CDATA[Anastasija Sevastova vs. Julia Goerges 2017 Mallorca Open Final Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/25/anastasija-sevastova-vs-julia-goerges-2017-mallorca-open-final-pick-odds-prediction#comments Anastasija Sevastova and Julia Goerges meet in the Final of the 2017 Mallorca Open.

Anastasija Sevastova is coming off a straight sets win over Caroline Garcia that took 18 games to decide. In the victory, Sevastova won 79 percent of her first serve points and 60 percent of her second serve points. Sevastova is coming off her best match yet in which she won 49 percent of her return points and 71 percent of her total serve points. Sevastova has had highs and lows in her serve this tournament, but her return has been top notch and is the main reason…

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Anastasija Sevastova and Julia Goerges meet in the Final of the 2017 Mallorca Open.

Anastasija Sevastova is coming off a straight sets win over Caroline Garcia that took 18 games to decide. In the victory, Sevastova won 79 percent of her first serve points and 60 percent of her second serve points. Sevastova is coming off her best match yet in which she won 49 percent of her return points and 71 percent of her total serve points. Sevastova has had highs and lows in her serve this tournament, but her return has been top notch and is the main reason she's in her fourth final appearance. Sevastova has to like her chances if she remains aggressive and keeps punishing second serves. Sevastova hopes to win her second career title and first since the 2010 Portugal Open. Sevastova is 0-1 in her career in final appearances on grass. Sevastova has won seven of her last 10 matches on grass court.

Julia Goerges is coming off a straight sets win over Catherine Bellis that took 14 games to decide. In the victory, Goerges won 77 percent of her first serve points and 45 percent of her second serve points. Goerges has yet to drop a set this tournament and has actually just lost a combined 14 games in her last four matches. Goerges is simply in the zone right now and is coming off a match in which she won 68 percent of her return points. Goerges has come out of nowhere with these performances and is simply playing her best probably since making the semis in Auckland. Goerges looks to win her third career title and first since the 2011 Porsche Tennis Grand Prix. Goerges has never been in a final appearance on grass. Goerges has split her last eight matches on grass court.

These two have played four times and Goerges has won three of those meetings. The most recent match was in the 2013 Auckland Open, a match Goerges won in straight sets. Sevastova’s only win over Goerges came in 2007.

The head to head doesn't mean much to me given that all of those matches were four years old or longer. Nothing recent. However, Goerges is playing at such a high quality, it's hard to bet against her. Heck, even oddsmakers have caught on, as despite Sevastova being the higher seed and the better player overall, she's an underdog. Goerges is serving well, returning well and hitting her spots, as she hasn't come close to dropping a set let alone a match.

I’ll side with Goerges in this match.

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Sat, 24 Jun 2017 13:43:58 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88287
<![CDATA[Petra Kvitova vs. Ashleigh Barty 2017 Aegon Classic Final Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/25/petra-kvitova-vs-ashleigh-barty-2017-aegon-classic-final-pick-odds-prediction#comments Petra Kvitova and Ashleigh Barty meet in the final of the 2017 Aegon Classic.

Petra Kvitova is coming off a straight sets win over Lucie Safarova that took eight games to decide. In the victory, Kvitova won 80 percent of her first serve points and 80 percent of her second serve points. Kvitova has yet to drop a set this tournament and didn't have to work as hard in the semifinals due to Safarova retiring in the second set. Kvitova continues to be the talk of the tournament given that shes played just six matches in 2017 and all five of her victories…

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Petra Kvitova and Ashleigh Barty meet in the final of the 2017 Aegon Classic.

Petra Kvitova is coming off a straight sets win over Lucie Safarova that took eight games to decide. In the victory, Kvitova won 80 percent of her first serve points and 80 percent of her second serve points. Kvitova has yet to drop a set this tournament and didn't have to work as hard in the semifinals due to Safarova retiring in the second set. Kvitova continues to be the talk of the tournament given that shes played just six matches in 2017 and all five of her victories have come in straight sets. With a serve that's just been flawless out of the gate, Kvitova is showing that she has the potential to return to the top-10 rather quickly. Kvitova hopes to win hr first title since the 2016 WTA Elite Trophy and her 20th title for her career. Kvitova is 2-1 in final appearances on grass and has won nine of her last 12 final appearances overall. Kvitova has won five of her last seven matches on grass court.

Ashleigh Barty is coming off a three sets win over Garbine Muguruza that took 28 games to decide. In the victory, Barty won 69 percent of her first serve points and 57 percent of her second serve points. Barty showed great poise after winning a match despite dropping the first set and was quite feisty on the return, producing four breaks. Barty has come out of nowhere as of late and has displayed great shotmaking ability along with an aggressive return that's produced 13 breaks in her last four matches. A win here and Barty is a 21-year-old to keep an eye on moving forward given her current play. Barty has a chance to win her second career title and second of the season. Barty has never played in a final on grass court. Barty has won six of her last seven matches on grass court.

These two have played once in the past, which was in the 2012 French Open, a match Kvitova won in straight sets. The match took 15 games to decide.

Barty burned me in the semifinals and has a chance to do it again. Not only is Barty playing at a high level, but you have to question if fatigue or rust will catch up to Kvitova, who has so little matches under her belt. Still, assuming they both stay in form, Kvitova is serving too well to bet against right now and probably has a little more motivation given what she's been through personally. Winning a tournament in her second try after her career was in jeopardy would be incredible for Kvitova.

So, I’m siding with Kvitova for the story and because of the way she's hitting the ball, especially on her serve.

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Sat, 24 Jun 2017 13:19:42 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88284
<![CDATA[Roger Federer vs. Alexander Zverev 2017 Gerry Weber Open Final Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/25/roger-federer-vs-alexander-zverev-2017-gerry-weber-open-final-pick-odds-prediction#comments Roger Federer and Alexander Zverev meet in the final of the 2017 Gerry Weber Open.

Roger Federer is coming off a straight sets win over Karen Khachanov that took 23 games to decide. In the victory, Federer won 71 percent of his first serve points and 58 percent of his second serve points. Federer has yet to drop a set this tournament and showed he’s capable of winning a match easily despite winning just 39 percent of his return points. Federer is moving well on the court and looks like somebody who is well rested and confident, as he doesn't have…

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Roger Federer and Alexander Zverev meet in the final of the 2017 Gerry Weber Open.

Roger Federer is coming off a straight sets win over Karen Khachanov that took 23 games to decide. In the victory, Federer won 71 percent of his first serve points and 58 percent of his second serve points. Federer has yet to drop a set this tournament and showed he’s capable of winning a match easily despite winning just 39 percent of his return points. Federer is moving well on the court and looks like somebody who is well rested and confident, as he doesn't have to play his best to win a single match. Federer hopes to win his fourth title of the season and his 92nd title of his career. Federer is 15-6 in his career in final appearances on grass. Federer has won 12 of his last 19 final appearances overall. Federer has won nine of his last 11 matches on grass court.

Alexander Zverev is coming off a three sets win over Richard Gasquet that took 29 games to decide. In the victory, Zverev won 82 percent of his first serve points and 48 percent of his second serve points. Zverev has played six sets hi last two matches and has shown consistently this tournament he's capable of taking his game to another level when needed. Zverev’s serve has been on point and the defensive effort improves when he needs to win points in crucial spots. Zverev has a shot at his fifth win over a top-10 player this season, as the 20-year-old continues his breakout season. Zverev hopes to win his fourth title this season and his fifth title for his career. Zverev is 0-1 in final appearances on grass. Zverev has also won his last four final appearances overall. Zverev has won eight of his last 10 matches on grass court.

These two have split the only two meetings with Zverev winning the 2016 Halle Open and Federer winning the 2016 Rome Masters. One of the two matches were decided in three sets.

This is going to be a fun match between these two talented players, as Zverev is growing up before our eyes and Federer is, well, Federer. You could make a case for either side, but I’m giving the edge to Federer, as he's just too consistent and still pounces on any mistakes his opponent makes. While Zverev has improved by leaps and bounds, he still has the occasional drop in his game, and that's when veteran and elite players take advantage and find the opening to win the match.

I like Federer here.

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Sat, 24 Jun 2017 13:01:14 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88281
<![CDATA[Grigor Dimitrov vs. Feliciano Lopez 2017 Queen's Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/24/grigor-dimitrov-vs-feliciano-lopez-2017-queens-pick-odds-prediction#comments Grigor Dimitrov and Feliciano Lopez meet in the semifinals of the 2017 Queen's Club Championships.

Grigor Dimitrov is coming off a three sets win over Daniil Medvedev that took 27 games to decide. In the victory, Dimitrov won 70 percent of his first serve points and 55 percent of his second serve points. Dimitrov has left the door open for his last two opponents but has still found ways to win critical third sets. While some would say Dimitrov is lucky to be in the semifinals, I consider it progress, as letdowns have usually been his downfall and…

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Grigor Dimitrov and Feliciano Lopez meet in the semifinals of the 2017 Queen's Club Championships.

Grigor Dimitrov is coming off a three sets win over Daniil Medvedev that took 27 games to decide. In the victory, Dimitrov won 70 percent of his first serve points and 55 percent of his second serve points. Dimitrov has left the door open for his last two opponents but has still found ways to win critical third sets. While some would say Dimitrov is lucky to be in the semifinals, I consider it progress, as letdowns have usually been his downfall and is the reason he's lost matches in the past. Now that Dimitrov is finding ways to win those those points, he's becoming a far more consistent player. Dimitrov has a chance to make his third final appearance of the season. Dimitrov has split his previous six semifinal appearances. Dimitrov has won five of his last seven matches on grass court.

Feliciano Lopez is coming off a three sets win over Tomas Berdych that took 38 games to decide. In the victory, Lopez won 91 percent of his first serve points and 43 percent of his second serve points. Lopez is coming off an unreal serving performance in which he won 67 of 74 first serve points and had 18 aces. If Lopez has anything left in the tank and come close to duplicating such a performance, he can probably punch his ticket into his 17th career singles final appearance. Lopez hopes to make his second final appearance of the season and his fifth final appearance on grass in his career. Lopez has won his last three semifinal appearances. Lopez has won seven of his last eight matches on grass court.

These two have played three times in the past and Dimitrov has won two of those meetings. The most recent match was in the 2016 Cincinnati Masters, a match Dimitrov won in three sets. Lopez’s only win over Dimitrov came in the 2010 Queen's Club Championships.

Considering the last two matches between these guys went the distance, and they're both playing solid tennis overall, we should expect a dandy semifinal match. I give the edge to Dimitrov, however, because of his return game. He should be able to have more success against Lopez’s serve than his past opponents and that's likely going to be the difference here.

I like Dimitrov to make his 12th career final appearance.

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Fri, 23 Jun 2017 15:26:52 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88215
<![CDATA[Garbine Muguruza vs. Ashleigh Barty 2017 Birmingham Classic Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/24/garbine-muguruza-vs-ashleigh-barty-2017-birmingham-classic-pick-odds-prediction#comments Garbine Muguruza and Ashleigh Barty meet in the semifinals of the 2017 Birmingham Classic.

Garbine Muguruza is coming off a two set win over Coco Vandeweghe that took 20 games to decide. In the victory, Muguruza won 69 percent of her first serve points and 43 percent of her second serve points. Muguruza was going to play a third set in the quarterfinals before Coco was forced to retire with an ankle injury. Muguruza is now in her third semifinals match of the season and is coming off a match in which she got 68 percent of her first serves in play.…

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Garbine Muguruza and Ashleigh Barty meet in the semifinals of the 2017 Birmingham Classic.

Garbine Muguruza is coming off a two set win over Coco Vandeweghe that took 20 games to decide. In the victory, Muguruza won 69 percent of her first serve points and 43 percent of her second serve points. Muguruza was going to play a third set in the quarterfinals before Coco was forced to retire with an ankle injury. Muguruza is now in her third semifinals match of the season and is coming off a match in which she got 68 percent of her first serves in play. It's all about consistency with Muguruza, as we know what she's capable of when playing at a high level, but the significant drops in play make her very tough to back. Muguruza looks for her first final appearance since last year's French Open. Muguruza has won four of her last five matches on grass court.

Ashleigh Barty is coming off a one set win over Camila Giorgi that took seven games to decide. In the victory, Barty won 89 percent of her first serve points and 80 percent of her second serve points. Barty looked really good for what little the match was played before Giorgi was forced to retire. Barty has simply dominated her service game this tournament and gives herself a chance to win this match if she can continue those percentages. In fact, Barty has won five straight matches when winning at least 70 percent of her first serve points, something she's done all three times in this tournament. Barty hopes to make her second career final appearance and second this season. Barty has won five of her last six matches on grass court.

These two have never previously met on the tennis court.

Barty has played some really solid tennis this tournament and has a chance to get to another final depending on which Muguruza decides to show up. However, Barty has struggled with her return this tournament, and Muguruza has the power shots and the shotmaking ability to take advantage of that. There’s going to be a lot of pressure on Barty to take her game to another level, and I’m not sure she's capable of that just yet because we haven't quite seen it.

I’ll take Muguruza to get to the final.

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Fri, 23 Jun 2017 14:50:16 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88212
<![CDATA[Richard Gasquet vs. Alexander Zverev 2017 Gerry Weber Open Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/24/richard-gasquet-vs-alexander-zverev-2017-gerry-weber-open-pick-odds-prediction#comments Richard Gasquet and Alexander Zverev meet in the semifinals of the 2017 Gerry Weber Open.

Richard Gasquet is coming off a three set win over Robin Haase that took 23 games to decide. In the victory, Gasquet won 75 percent of his first serve points and 47 percent of his second serve points. Gasquet continues to struggle with his serve, as he's been broken eight times in this tournament, but he is coming off a match in which he won 44 percent of his return points. Gasquet also lost a combined two games in the two sets he won, so he's proven he can…

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Richard Gasquet and Alexander Zverev meet in the semifinals of the 2017 Gerry Weber Open.

Richard Gasquet is coming off a three set win over Robin Haase that took 23 games to decide. In the victory, Gasquet won 75 percent of his first serve points and 47 percent of his second serve points. Gasquet continues to struggle with his serve, as he's been broken eight times in this tournament, but he is coming off a match in which he won 44 percent of his return points. Gasquet also lost a combined two games in the two sets he won, so he's proven he can take his game to another level when needed. Gasquet looks to make his second final appearance of the season. Gasquet has a shot at his fourth career final appearance on grass. Gasquet has won six of his last seven matches on grass court.

Alexander Zverev is coming off a three sets win over Roberto Bautista Agut that took 33 games to decide. In the victory, Zverev won 88 percent of his first serve points and 64 percent of his second serve points. Zverev is coming off a serving clinic in which he produced 19 aces overall and lost just eight service points in a dominating third set. Zverev is quickly growing up before our eyes with more consistent play, and he's now playing in his fifth semifinal of the season. As long as Zverev can continue to play disciplined tennis and not rack up the unforced errors, he's going to be just fine. Zverev looks to make his fourth final appearance of the season and his second career final appearance on grass. Zverev has won five of his last six matches on grass court.

These two have played once in the past, which was in this years Open Sud de France, a match Zverev won in straight sets. The match took 22 games to decide.

Gasquet isn't serving well enough to win this match and his loss to him earlier this year, Zverev ate his second serve alive. When you add in the way Zverev is serving and the fact his confidence has grown since winning that match, this is one he should win again. Gasquet’s letdowns here and there are going to be all the young Zverev needs to advance to another final this season.

Zverev wins this match in two long sets.

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Fri, 23 Jun 2017 14:37:25 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88209
<![CDATA[Petra Kvitova vs. Lucie Safarova 2017 Birmingham Classic Pick, Odds, Prediction]]> https://sportschatplace.com/tennis-picks/2017/06/24/petra-kvitova-vs-lucie-safarova-2017-birmingham-classic-pick-odds-prediction#comments Petra Kvitova and Lucie Safarova meet in the semifinals of the 2017 Birmingham Classic.

Petra Kvitova is coming off a straight sets win over Kristina Mladenovic that took 23 games to decide. In the victory, Kvitova won 74 percent of her first serve points and 72 percent of her second serve points. Kvitova is now 4-1 since returning from having her hand sliced open, and she's coming off a match in which she dropped just 15 service points. Kvitova is clearly ahead of the curve, especially when you consider many thought she would never be the same…

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Petra Kvitova and Lucie Safarova meet in the semifinals of the 2017 Birmingham Classic.

Petra Kvitova is coming off a straight sets win over Kristina Mladenovic that took 23 games to decide. In the victory, Kvitova won 74 percent of her first serve points and 72 percent of her second serve points. Kvitova is now 4-1 since returning from having her hand sliced open, and she's coming off a match in which she dropped just 15 service points. Kvitova is clearly ahead of the curve, especially when you consider many thought she would never be the same considering the damage to her hand that required a lot of physical therapy. Kvitova has yet to drop a set this tournament and can make her fourth final appearance on grass. Kvitova hopes to make her first final appearance since the 2016 WTA Elite Trophy. Kvitova has won five of her last seven matches on grass court.

Lucie Safarova is coming off a three set win over Daria Gavrilova that took 32 games to decide. In the victory, Safarova won 72 percent of her first serve points and 48 percent of her second serve points. Safarova is coming off a long match that included two tiebreaks, and she's needed eight sets to get to this point. Safarova has been broken seven times this tournament, but she's buckled down in every big moment and found a way to advance to her fourth semifinal this season. Safarova has to be more consistent with her second serve in order to advance to the final. Safarova has a chance to make her third final appearance since 2016. Safarova has won six of her last seven matches on grass court.

These two have played nine times and Kvitova has won every match. The most recent meeting was in the 2016 Birmingham Classic, a match Kvitova won in 17 games. Three of the matches were decided in three sets.

Kvitova has not only been the better and more consistent player this week, but she's simply owned Safarova in past meetings. Of course, not having many matches under her belt is the x-factor here, as it’s unfair to expect Kvitova to continue to breeze through the competition, but shes looked sharp up to this point. If Safarova continues to struggle with her serve at times, this is a match Kvitova should have little trouble winning, just like in the past.

I’ll side with Kvitova to advance to the final.

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Fri, 23 Jun 2017 14:09:38 -0400 https://sportschatplace.com/index.php?id=88206