The semi finals of the 2014 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals are set for Saturday at the o2 Arena in London and Sean Calvert expects Novak Djokovic to overcome his first test of the week...
"Playing poorly in Bercy Kei was able to last 17 games with Djokovic and the extra rest should enable him to at least make one set close here, which should be enough for the overs to land."
Friday's bets at the World Tour Finals were on the money, as Novak Djokovic led 5-1 in the opener against Tomas Berdych, which allowed my 11.010/1 Cash Out advice of 6-1 to be layed off at a low of 2.0521/20.
My recommended bet of the day was also profitable, as the 1.910/11 about the match finishing in fewer than 19.5 total games was a comfortable winner, as Djokovic eased to a routine 6-2, 6-2 success.
And the Serb is back in action on Saturday after securing the year-end number one ranking for 2014 with that win over Berdych and now he faces Kei Nishikori for a place in the final.
This will be the second clash between this pair in a fortnight, after Djokovic defeated a fatigued Nishikori in almost the same conditions at the Paris Masters in straight sets.
Nishikori was somewhat hampered by a very late finish the previous night in that match, but in slow conditions it's a very tall order indeed for him to be as aggressive as successfully as he was in New York.
The slow court here at the o2 and in Bercy makes it tough to hit any winners past Djokovic, as can be highlighted by looking at the winners to unforced errors ratios this week.
The vast space behind the baseline and lack of pace in the surface make it a thankless task against a defender like Novak and Nishikori would need to redline his game for the whole match to win here.
His poor serving has also been a big concern this week and there has been a fair amount of inconsistency in his hitting, which at its best is superb, but can be prone to lapses.
As for Djokovic, well, he's now on a run of 27 straight wins on indoor hard courts, which goes all the way back to a loss to Sam Querrey, of all people, in Bercy two years ago.
In quicker conditions I would give Nishikori a decent shot here, but at the end of what's been a long and very successful season for the Japanese star it looks a tall order to win this.
Once again he has to recover from a three setter with the master grinder David Ferrer, while Djokovic has barely broken sweat in his three matches this week.
Kei has had longer to recover this time of course and that could well make the difference between the over 19.5 total games winning or losing.
Playing poorly in Bercy Kei was able to last 17 games with Djokovic and the extra rest should enable him to at least make one set close here, which should be enough for the overs to land.
I can't see Nishikori being able to keep up the level required to win this in these conditions, but if he has a better day on serve than of late he can make it Novak's toughest day so far this week.
Back over 19.5 total games at 2.245/4