Mikael Ymer vs Alexander Zverev French Open Picks - 5/30/2019
Mikael Ymer vs Alexander Zverev
4am EST, 30th May 2019
Roland Garros (Paris, France)
Sascha's struggle continues, but he is somehow fighting through and racking up the wins. He was on the brink of elimination throughout most of last week in Geneva. He needed 3 sets vs Dellien, Delbonis and Nicolas Jarry in the finals. He was also pretty lucky to win the title, with Jarry missing a volley at the net on a match point. The theme of mediocre performance and hard-fought wins is continuing in Paris. 4+ hours on the court as a 7 to 1 favorite is definitely not a favorable look for Zverev and his deep run ambitions in this tournament. What exactly is the reason for underperforming like this is unknown. But, I find it very interesting that his coach Ivan Lendl decided not to be in his box at the French Open. The chemistry inside the team might not be at the all-time high, which is starting to show on the court as well.
Similar to Alexander, Mikael Ymer is another player with an older brother on the tour. And another similarity to Zverev family, younger brother could be more successful when it's all said and done. Both Elias and Mikael are very talented. But I like the younger Ymer better because he's developing at a faster pace and could soon be a regular on ATP tour, after dominating challengers recently. In last three appearances, he has two finals and one quarterfinal. Fought through the qualies here in Paris and eliminated Blaz Rola in straight sets to begin his main draw campaign.
His success on challenger tour was mostly built around his ability to keep the ball in play. At that level, opponents simply doesn't have the patience and the art of point construction to get around that defensive wall. When transitioning to ATP tour, his defensive ability alone will not be enough. He will be forced to add some weapons and make his game more well rounded. But for this match, he might have his moments by doing what he does best. Zverev is not playing his best tennis at the moment. His striking is not as crisp as it should be. Especially not on the backhand side. And with playing conditions being heavy and favoring defenders, it leads me to believe he might be in for another bumpy ride. For example, John Millman whom he faced in the first round has a pretty similar playing style to Ymer. Grinding it out from behind the baseline. Not giving away free points. Forcing you into making an extra shot... Sascha didn't fare all that well against that type of play.
Betting odds & prediction
Since we have a No.5 player in the world facing someone that is ranked 149th, it's normal that odds are pretty lopsided. You need to pay -600 when backing Zverev in this spot. Something I wouldn't recommend considering his current form. If you have to do it, lay the points for a better payout. Ymer's serve is vulnerable and he has a tendency to drop sets in 6-1 or 6-2 fashion. Making him unappealing option when talking about covering game spreads. Best option to get behind young Swede in this situation, in my opinion, can be found in the sets handicap market. I have to go with the trend of Zverev not being able to finish in straight sets. There should be period in this match where he will not be able to find the court on the other side of the net and Mikael will jump on that opportunity.
Pick: Mikael Ymer +2.5 sets (-103) Pinnacle
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