Jay Clarke vs Roger Federer Wimbledon Betting Tips and Predictions - 7/4/2019
Jay Clarke vs Roger Federer
5 am EST, 4th July 2019
After struggling a lot since the start of the grass court season, win in the first round of Wimbledon was pretty surprising when talking about Jay Clarke. There are not many British tennis players that have a such a distinctive resentment about the grass courts. Part of the reason is probably that he moved to Sweden when he was a junior and practiced at Good to Great tennis academy. He didn't come across grass courts very often there, so he isn't that used to them as some other players from Great Britain. His game is much more traditional and he prefers clay courts over other surfaces. That is why it was not a big surprise when he started this grass court season with 0-4 before coming to Wimbledon. First, he lost to Donskoy in Surbiton, then retired against Duckworth in Nottingham. After stepping up from challenger to ATP tour, results did not improve as expected. After falling to Lucas Pouille in Queen's Club, he rounded up that 4-match losing streak vs Juan Ignacio Londero in the first round of Eastbourne. That losing streak was the part of the reason, why he was considered as a big underdog vs Noah Rubin in the first round. American had success in Wimbledon as a junior and got into the main draw by winning 3 matches in the qualifying. But on Tuesday, he was simply not playing very good tennis. He didn't throw any grass-court "curveballs" at Clarke to push him out of his comfort zone and he paid the price for it in the end.
On the other side, we have the best grass court player of all times. Roger Federer's number of titles in Wimbledon is 4 times higher then Clarke's amount of matches won on grass courts! At 37 years of age, he isn't showing any signs of slowing down just yet. As accustomed in the last couple of years, he wasn't playing much before Wimbledon. He honored his contract with ATP tournament in Halle, where he usually participates and that was it. Despite losing an unusual number of sets there, he eventually did win another title there and showed that he's in great form before Wimbledon. In the first round, it was expected from him to win very comfortably against Lloyd Harris, but it wasn't that easy after all. South African managed to stun Roger in the first set by winning it 6-3. But after that, Federer took control over the match and conceded only 5 games total after that. He won 79% of the points behind its serve and faced only 1 break point in the entire match.
I'd be very surprised if Clarke manages to stick around in this one. He simply doesn't have the game to do it on the grass. His potential is obvious on other surfaces, but he lacks some crucial elements in his game to get better on the grass courts. For example, he is a baseliner who is used to construct the points with his topspin forehand. That is something that simply doesn't work that well on this surface. He did make some adjustments in his game though, by adding a backhand slice, but it is obvious that it doesn't come naturally to him and it's not very effective, from what I've seen in his previous matches.
Betting odds & prediction
Odds here are very lopsided as expected. And this is not based only on names and rankings. Clarke will really have a lot of problems staying competitive here. I think Federer is going to jump into an early lead and keep piling it on. With spread being -9.5 a total sitting at 27.5 you might think there can't be any value backing the favorite at this price, but I think there still is some. My total line was 27 and I could easily see this one ending 6-1, 6-4, 6-2.
Tony's Pick: under 27.5 games (-105)
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