Gilles Simon vs Felix Auger-Aliassime ATP Moneyline Picks - 6/13/2019
Gilles Simon vs Felix Auger-Aliassime
4 am EST, 12th June 2019
ATP Stuttgart, Germany
Auger-Aliassime successfully passed the test yesterday. It was his first official grass court match in his pro career. He did run into these playing conditions when he was still playing juniors tennis, but as a pro, this was his debut. He passed it with flying colors. Needed a couple of games, in the beginning, to get his feet wet and get a feel for movement and timing on his shots. Because this is a very unique playing surface and most things are incomparable to clay, where they played the last couple of months. After holding their serves firmly for majority of the first set, Felix managed to break his opponent in the 12th game. After breaking the ice with that one, he was a much better player in the second set, putting constant pressure on opponents serve, breaking it one more time at the end of the second set for a comprehensive win. Stats were pretty standard for a grass court match, winning nearly 80% of points behind his own serve. But, he could use a couple of more aces vs future opponents. 4/3 ace to double fault ratio was not great. And neither was 59% of the first serves in play.
I am saying that because he'll play someone that is diametrically opposite from erratic Ernests Gulbis, who he beat in the previous match. Gilles Simon is someone that knows how to make opponents life miserable on grass courts. He will give very little gifts to young Canadian and make him deserve every single point in the match, unlike Gulbis who tried to carve a hole through the net with his shots. He is 16 years older then Auger-Aliassime and their experience with the grass courts are not comparable. Simon has nearly 80 career matches on ATP tour alone, winning them at a 55% rate and with Eastbourne finals (2013) as his best result. His record in Stuttgart is not great, standing at 2-3, but none of those losses were too bad, considering he fell to Juan Martin del Potro and grass court specialist Feliciano Lopez (twice).
These two players have never met before, so we'll have to predict how this one plays out while possessing fairly limited data. But having limited data on one of the players is saying something. Auger-Aliassime playing his first pro match on grass yesterday is probably telling us that he might not be ready for what Simon is having in store for him. Frenchman is a very good defender. Knows how to move on this surface. What type of shots to use to make it more difficult for his opponent to attack him and how to put his opponent in awkward situations from which he'll be unable to play his usual game. He'll set up traps around Felix and wait for him to fall into them.
Betting odds & prediction
The line opened pretty evened up on both sides. I guess this one was not the easiest to come up with. On one side, you've got a talented youngster with a big following among the betting public. And on the other side, you've got someone that is not that relevant on ATP tour anymore but holds a big edge in terms of experience and playing style compatibility to these playing conditions. If Auger's serve once again stays below 65% percent, I think his chances for the win drop significantly. He needs those easy points off his serve because once Simon forces a baseline exchange Felix is going to be in his world playing the game on his terms. Not a place where you want to be in this match.
Total is sitting at 23 at the moment, which is a bit too high in my opinion. Obviously, grass courts protect the serve more than other surfaces, but this is not a type of a match where we have two dominant servers, holding their serve at a 95% rate. I expect more chances for returners in this one which should keep the sets from going into the tie-breaks. There is always a risk of a match going into the third set, but one worth taking when offered such a line.
Guy's Pick: Gilles Simon +139
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