ATP Miami Day Five Preview: Underdog price attractive for Auger-Aliassime

Serbian Tennis Player Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic is a virtual certainty to progress tonight...
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Day five of the men's singles at the Miami Masters sees the third round commence and Dan Weston has found a good thing in Auger-Aliassime.

"Both are making huge waves on the main tour currently, but at just 18 years of age, it's probably the Canadian prodigy, Auger-Aliassime, with the greater long-term upside. In fact, I make him pretty decent value to take this, with the market seemingly much more pro-Hurkacz."

Cecchinato progresses with a walkover

Our selection on Saturday made it through to round three, but it wasn't quite the result we wanted, with Marco Cecchinato getting past Damir Dzumhur by way of a walkover, voiding our recommendation.

Djokovic a heavy favourite to make round four

We move on to eight matches on Sunday afternoon and evening, with there being a few heavy favourites on the card. Novak Djokovic is a virtual certainty to end Federico Delbonis' run in the tournament, with my model pricing the Serb up similarly to the market - he's just [1.05] to progress.

John Isner, even in slow conditions, is correctly a strong favourite at [1.26] against Albert Ramos, while Nick Kyrgios is similarly priced against another clay courter, Dusan Lajovic.

Auger-Aliassime with huge long-term potential

The other five matches on the schedule have more uneasy favourites, priced between [1.50] and [1.75], but I can only find one player as value this evening and that's in the match between two massive improvers in Hubert Hurkacz and Felix Auger-Aliassime.

Both are making huge waves on the main tour currently, but at just 18 years of age, it's probably the Canadian prodigy, Auger-Aliassime, with the greater long-term upside. I make him pretty decent value to take this, with the market seemingly much more pro-Hurkacz.

Canadian prodigy value as an underdog

Initially, the market found it quite hard to split the duo, with Auger-Aliassime first matched at [2.06] before drifting out markedly to [2.46]. He's received a touch of support since then, now trading at [2.36] to make round four.

I actually think he's got a better chance to take this than the market, and make him a slight favourite for the meeting, although I do note that perhaps Hurkacz is a little unflattered by his hold/break combined percentage, performing much worse than return points won expectation on break points on return in 2019.

However, with value tonight rather thin on the ground, we must take whatever we can, and Auger-Aliassime is our pick for Sunday evening.

Bautista-Agut a solid favourite to reverse head to head record

In other matches, Fabio Fognini takes bad form but a 7-2 head to head lead into his meeting with Roberto Bautista-Agut, although only two encounters are since July 2014 and for the first four, Bautista-Agut was ranked outside the top 50. Given this, it's difficult to give the historical head to head series much credence at all, although I'm sure it will be referred to by commentators! Bautista-Agut is priced at [1.57], which looks a little short, but nothing particularly noteworthy.

British hopes lie with Kyle Edmund against Milos Raonic, and the Yorkshireman is correctly priced as a [2.36] underdog to defeat the Canadian, while Nikoloz Basilashvili's recent level has been reflected by the [1.51] about the Georgian to get past Robin Haase. Rather like Bautista-Agut at a similar price, this looks a touch short, but not absurdly so.

We also see Borna Coric take on Jeremy Chardy, and Coric's mediocre 2019 is illustrated his price. The [1.58] about the Croatian talent looks a little generous at first glance, but his 12 month surface data has been impacted a bit by three defeats as a sub [1.50] favourite in this campaign already, as well as a bagel set loss in his win over Roberto Carballes Baena in round two. As a result, his price isn't hugely out of line with my model.

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