In the second men's semi-final at the Australian Open, Hyeon Chung faces Roger Federer, with the winner facing Marin Cilic in Sunday's final. Can Chung shock Federer to continue his run in the event? Our tennis columnist, Dan Weston, runs the numbers to find out...
"Across the last 12 months on hard court, Chung has actually broken opponents marginally more than Federer (26.7% compared to Federer's 26.3%), but Federer has a huge edge on serve, holding 91.5% to Chung's 79.5%, and this is the main reason, plus reputation and experience on the big stage, as to why Federer is a strong favourite to progress."
Cilic defeats Edmund in straight sets
It was mixed emotions for us yesterday, as our over 3.5 set position on the Marin Cilic and Kyle Edmund match was a loser, but our [40.0] outright pick on Cilic progressed to the final. Assuming Roger Federer does beat Hyeon Chung, now would be a suitable time to trade out of our position, given Cilic's awful record against elite-level opponents.
Serve advantage gives Federer a large edge
Given Federer's price on the Exchange - the Swiss legend is a current [1.17] to join Cilic in Sunday's final - such an eventuality is likely, but my model did make Federer's price a touch short against a player who is finally now starting to justify his potential, pricing him at a bigger [1.29].
Across the last 12 months on hard court, Chung has actually broken opponents marginally more than Federer (26.7% compared to Federer's 26.3%), but Federer has a huge edge on serve, holding 91.5% to Chung's 79.5%, and this is the main reason, plus reputation and experience on the big stage, as to why Federer is a strong favourite to progress.
Chung far from disgraced against bigger names
One big worry for Chung would be that he's yet to win a set against a top 10 player on hard court when priced in excess of [3.00], although he wasn't disgraced in these matches, and quite incredibly, didn't lose a single even-money handicap line in these matches despite not winning a set.
It's perhaps this angle we can look towards here, given the slight value on the Korean according to my model, but the Sportsbook is taking no chances, pricing Chung +5.5 games at even money - Federer at 8/11 is a market-leading price, so it is clear that they also respect Chung's ability to cover here. Ideally I'd be looking at around [2.20] for Chung with a 5.5 game head start.
Taking a chance on Chung to win worth considering
I'm not all that enticed by the 4/5 offered on the over 35.5 game line either, given that the match will almost certainly have to go four or five sets to cover this line, so it looks like the best strategy here, given that Chung is value on my model, is just to back him to win the match at [6.60] for a small stake.
While it is certainly possible that the young South Korean will freeze in the biggest match of his career, he has plenty of upside at the age of 21, and also is running below expectation on break points in the last 12 months, so has further improvement to give. It would certainly make for a fantastic match if Chung was to give his best against arguably the greatest player of all time.
Follow Dan on Twitter @TennisRatings
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Back Hyeon Chung to beat Roger Federer at [6.60].