Murray looks poised to land 2nd Wimbledon title

Tweener looks at the outright market in the Men's Singles at Wimbledon and he believes that Andy Murray is the clear value at 11/4.

Advised Bet:

3 points win Andy Murray to win Men's Singles at 11/4 with William Hill, Paddy Power and Boylesports

Although there is a hint of a sea of change at the top of men's tennis after Cilic victory over Nishikori in the US Open and the recent magnificent French Open win by Wawrinka. I cannot see anything bar the usual top 4 having their hands on the trophy this year.  Although I mention the top 4, it really should be the top 3 since it has been nearly a year since we have seen Nadal at his imperious best.

Grass court tennis is a funny one, it certainly isn’t what it used to be when Sampras, Edberg et al (serve & volleyers) (Even Bjorn Borg served and volley at Wimbledon) all ruled the court.  The grass has become slower, more consistent, balls have become heavier bouncier and racquet/string technology have improved so much which means points are normally won from the back of the court these days much like the other 2 surfaces.

Despite these changes, there are still several elements to note, it normally takes good juniors a few years to adapt/learn to do well on this surface, hence we have seen good runs by seasoned veterans in recent years such as Tommy Haas. The ball does skid off the surface, therefore it is important to be a good server on this surface and the surface is kinder to players who have variation/plays with variation instead of top spin off both wings.  Players such as Dolgopolov, Stakhovsky, Stepanek, Haas, Federer etc.

So who wins? Actually, that is the wrong question, since this is a tipping column; it is what is the best value bet.  The 11-4 for Murray should be snapped up.  He has been playing great tennis again this year and this surface suits him to the ground.  As a previous champion and with his form and grass court pedigree, he has no one to fear. The draw was mentioned as unkind to him when it initially came out, but it was load of hog wash.  Who does he need to beat before a potential semi against Federer/Berdych or final v Djokovic?  He has to beat an off colour Nadal who has not done well at Wimbledon for a few years.  Tsonga would be dangerous but he has been injured since the French Open. Indeed, I believe Tsonga will get knocked out 1st round by Muller.

Novak Djokovic is the man which Murray has a very bad h2h record with, but the French Open and the Australian Open show there isn’t much between them and especially now on Novak's weakest surface, I can see Murray turning the tables.  Furthermore, Novak is best price 11-8 which frankly stinks given his draw is much harder than Murray.

Federer has been handed a kind draw until a potential show down with Berdych.  He has been playing well and we all know his pedigree on grass.  But there is no denying he is not the player he was, his return of serve is not as good as Murray/Djokovic and his backhand is a weakness which can be exploited by the very best. He is around 7-1 which is fair in my opinion; he was around this mark last year with an even better draw.  Yes Federer demolished Murray last year in the o2 but Murray has improved significantly since and over 5 sets, Murray's better defensive skills should borne fruit.

Berdych is the danger man. On his day, he can over power anyone and play his opponent off court. He has been very consistent this year but just failing to beat the very best. What he probably lacks the most is 'mental' given his defence is the worst of the top guys, he has to play a 'Wawrinka French Open' type of match to beat the very best.  The tools are there, it’s a matter of whether he is capable on the day. The 40-1 available is good given I believe it will be a close match between him and Federer and he can potentially blast Murray off court in the semis.   The weather is forecast to be excellent this week which should help him since he is a poor player when it is windy or when conditions are against him.

Of the rest, Wawrinka big swings do not suit this surface and he simply does not return well enough.  If Nadal plays to his best, he is a danger to all, but his price of 25-1 tells us, that he isn’t.  If he appears in great form in the 1st few rounds, we can always get involved than.

Raonic is often talked up as one of the challengers and he is very hard man to beat since his serve is very hard to break.  Yet equally, he do not break often but mentally he is strong and normally wins the tie break unlike Karlovic who has one of the worst tie break record in history given his serve. Raonic has just come back from injury and this is maybe too soon even though he is in the nice part of the draw.

Dimitrov has always promised much and grass seems to suit his game to the ground.  Yet, he has been poor this year, it’s very hard to see him turn it round in just 2 weeks given he has struggled for form all year.

Nishikori is a danger since he is one of the best shot makers in the game, yet his game is probably too 'lightweight' for this surface. He will lose serve more often than he should, which is a problem against a good server. A perfect example would be his defeat v Raonic last year.  He was the better player but could not break and lost tie breaks.

Cilic is fairly interesting since he has all the tools necessary and he has been dismissed similar to his US Open victory last year. But Cilic has done absolutely nothing since the US Open and I doubt he will ever do anything similar...

So all in all, Murray at 11-4 is the call, if he plays as well as he been for the last 2 months, I cannot see him having any difficulty until the semi-finals. Given I believe he will beat Federer/Berdych in the semis and Djokovic in the final; this is a no brainer for me.

Recap = Advised Bet:

3 points win Andy Murray to win Men's Singles at 11/4 with William Hill, Paddy Power and Boylesports