2018 ATP Wimbledon Quarterly Betting Preview: Who Can Challenge Cilic?
Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Marin Cilic
World No. 5 Marin Cilic is the top dog in this quarter. The Croat enters the tournament on great form after taking the title at Queen’s Club, where he beat Gilles Muller and current seeds Fernando Verdasco, Sam Querrey, Nick Kyrgios and Novak Djokovic.
Cilic has recently been a picture of consistency at Wimbledon, advancing to the quarterfinal or better in each of the past four years (including the final last season). Cilic proved at this year’s Aussie Open that he’s got the skill to test Roger Federer in a Slam final (pushing the Swiss to five sets), and if he can raise his game this year, then he can improve upon last year’s final run at SW19 and win his second major title.
Let’s examine this quarter a little more from a betting perspective by looking at some of the historical head-to-head records and values in the futures market and first round.
Cilic Head-to-Head vs. Seeds (Grass): 17-5 (2-0)
- 3-1 vs. Grigor Dimitrov
- 7-3 vs. John Isner (2-0)
- 2-1 vs. Milos Raonic
- 1-0 vs. Lucas Pouille
- 3-0 vs. Pablo Carreno Busta
- 0-0 vs. Filip Krajinovic
- 1-0 vs. Stefanos Tsiptsipas
Key Head-to-Head Records (Grass)
- Dimitrov vs. Isner 1-2 (N/A)
- Raonic vs. Isner 1-3 (N/A)
- Dimitrov vs. Raonic 3-2 (N/A)
Potential Popcorn Matches
- Stan Wawrinka vs. Grigor Dimitrov (1R)
- Lucas Pouille vs. Denis Kudla (1R)
- John Isner vs. Grigor Dimitrov (4R)
- Marin Cilic vs. Milos Raonic (4R)
- Grigor Dimitrov: (1R: Stan Wawrinka, 2R: Yuki Bhambri/Thomas Fabbiano, 3R: Stefanos Tsitsipas, 4R: John Isner, QF: Marin Cilic)
Unseeded Grass Specialists
None of note.
R1 Moneyline Parlay Pieces
- Grigor Dimitrov (-385) vs. Stan Wawrinka (+280)
R1 Upset Potential
- Josh Donaldson (-200) vs. Malek Jaziri (+170)
- Nicolas Jarry (-200) vs. Filip Krajinovic (+170)
- Pablo Carreno Busta (-250) vs. Radu Albot (+190)
The first two just look a little too high, even with injury questions surrounding Krajinovic. In regards to Pablo Carreno Busta, he’s never won a Tour-level match on grass. I can not justify that price on the Spaniard.
Finding Futures Value
Big John Isner is worth a shot at 11/1 to win this quarter. Cilic at 6/4 still presents a fair amount of value as the “chalk option,” but we could see madness in this section, which contains four big hitters in Cilic, Raonic, Isner and Dimitrov.
I was surprised to see Isner bypass all of the grass events leading up to Wimbledon, but the extra freshness could work in his favor (assuming “all systems are clear” with his booming serve).
Isner has never made it to the Round of 16 at Wimbledon, which is perplexing, considering his playstyle. However, after winning his maiden Masters title earlier this season, he should arrive in London with more confidence.
Theoretically, the grass should give John a boost on his “1-2” (first serve, forehand). And without any truly elite returners in his quarter, Isner is a lively outside shot to win it at 11-1, especially since he owns a combined 5-2 record against Dimitrov and Raonic.
I’m not buying either Dimitrov (9/2) or Stan Wawrinka (12/1), who will meet in the first round. Dimitrov has looked all out of sorts in recent months, and Stan looked really poor last week in Eastbourne against Andy Murray. I’d stay away from both despite their high profiles.
Quarter Bets to Watch: Cilic +150 and Isner +1100
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