Wimbledon Day Eight Men's Tips: Berrettini can keep it competitive against Federer

Swiss Tennis Player Roger Federer
Roger Federer could be pushed today by Matteo Berrettini...

After a rest day yesterday, it's Manic Monday at Wimbledon today with all 16 of the remaining men's players left in the draw in action. Dan Weston is back with his preview...

"In the last 18 months on grass, Federer has won more service points (76% to 72%) and more on return as well (38% to 34%) but the combined percentages (114% to 106%) show that the gap between the two players isn't quite as big as the market would suggest. "

Heavy favourites dominate on Manic Monday

Week two at Wimbledon gets underway but sadly on the men's side, there are no evenly matched encounters in the round of 16. The biggest priced favourite today is around the 2/51.40 mark - David Goffin, for his match against Fernando Verdasco - and it's a shame that more competitive matches aren't anticipated today.

Unfortunately, my model largely agreed with all this market pricing - there's a marked discrepancy between the grass-court ability of all the favourites and underdogs - although I have one player highlighted as some slight value, which is our cautious recommendation today.

Berrettini can keep it close against Federer

This is the heavy underdog Matteo Berrettini, who is 2/151.13 against Roger Federer. In the last 18 months on grass, Federer has won more service points (76% to 72%) and more on return as well (38% to 34%) but the combined percentages (114% to 106%) show that the gap between the two players isn't quite as big as the market would suggest.

These numbers also illustrate that Berrettini is at a pretty decent level - borderline top 10 - on grass with these numbers and it's also fair to think that given his career progression this year, he might have improved since his grass court matches last season, which were included in his data.

In fact, this season, there's a smaller gap between the two players on all surfaces (106% to 111% combined serve/return points won) across all surfaces and while Federer should be favourite, and this isn't far from being a home ground for him, it is difficult to justify the market pricing considering Berrettini's obvious ability.

The game handicap line on the Exchange is 6/52.20 with Berrettini having a 5.5 game head start, and of a very tough card today, this looks the best spot of a bad bunch.

Bautista-Agut with historical success against Paire

In other matches, Roberto Bautista-Agut takes a bizarre 8-0 head to head lead into his match with Benoit Paire, which I feel has influenced the market. The Spaniard is 1/41.25 to win, and given that the Frenchman, Paire, has struggled so badly on serve in these head to head matches - he's won just 54% of service points - then I think it's fair to have some influence, even though they've only met once since 2015.

Another dominant head to head is Kei Nishikori's 9-0 lead over Mikhail Kukushkin, where he's only dropped two sets. Kukushkin (56% service points won in these matches) is another who has struggled on serve in these previous meetings and it would take a considerable upgrade for him to challenge Nishikori today.

Djokovic and Nadal overwhelming favourites to progress

We also see Novak Djokovic as an overwhelming favourite to get past the improving Ugo Humbert - perhaps a similar showing to which Hubert Hurkacz exhibited on Friday last week against the world number one would be a realistic target for Humbert - while Rafa Nadal is similarly priced against Joao Sousa.

In addition, our outright pick, Milos Raonic for quarter two, is two matches from converting. The Canadian is a heavy favourite at 2/111.19 to get past the surprise package of week one, Guido Pella.

Follow Dan on Twitter @TennisRatings and watch all the action from Wimbledon on Betfair Live Video.

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