Fernando Verdasco vs Antoine Hoang ATP Parlay - 5/30/2019
Fernando Verdasco vs Antoine Hoang
4am EST, 30th May 2019
Roland Garros (Paris, France)
After a very slow start into the clay court season, Verdasco is slowly getting back on pace and might actually have a very solid summer. Losses to Menendez in Marrakech and Herbert in Monte Carlo were definitely not expected. But since then, he had some big wins, such as Thiem in Madrid and no bad defeats. His biggest issue was always inconsistency. Finding some rhythm and continuity early in this tournament would make him a potential mine for higher seeds in this part of the draw (Thiem, Monfils). Looking solely at the result in the first round, some might not give him the credit he deserves for this performance. Evans might not be known for his ability on clay courts, but he threw everything he could at Nando, who had the right answers throughout the majority of their match.
He is facing home crowd favorite Antoine Hoang in the second round. Wild card recipient got the work done in the first round as a +250 underdog vs Damir Dzumhur. I was not very surprised by that win, watching Hoang numerous times on challenger tour. There is no doubt in my mind that there is a bright future in front of this talented youngster. But at this point, he simply has too many holes that are not difficult to exploit for savvy veterans on the ATP tour. He lacks experience at this level, having played only 4 matches on the tour before Roland Garros. Winning only one of them.
Holes in his game that I was talking about are mostly related to his decision making. He has pretty much all the tools needed to become one of the top players. Solid serve, powerful groundstrokes from both wings, decent agility for his size, etc. But he is relying too heavily on his power at the moment, not realizing that shot selection and point construction is very important at this level. You will rarely be able to win matches on ATP tour by "bullying" your opponent. You have to be able to outthink and outsmart him. He is getting a free lesson on that topic from Verdasco on Thursday. Nando is going to use all the variety in his game to lure Hoang into some low percentage shots and take advantage of all those mistakes. He used his topspin forehand extremely well vs Evans. As a lefty, he is able to create sick angles, open up the court with that shot and build the point around it. Hoang has a solid backhand, but he is often too aggressive with it. Fernando will put him into situations where that is going to backfire at him.
Betting odds & prediction
Unfortunately for me, linemakers saw this as well, which is not very surprising. Pricing Verdasco lower than -700 would probably make no sense considering the difference in quality and experience. Going against the Frenchmen at Roland Garros can be tricky at times because they get a lot of support here and it often brings the best out of them. But in this case, I don't believe it can change the outcome by a whole lot. Verdasco is going to pick his spots, place the ball wisely and watch the youngster get buried by his own unforced errors.
Guy's Pick: Fernando Verdasco -7 (-110)
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