Thursday’s ATP Daily Hitter: Anderson or Kohlschreiber in Madrid?

Thursday’s ATP Daily Hitter: Anderson or Kohlschreiber in Madrid? article feature image

We’re back from Madrid after taking a few days off due to tricky looking cards. Thursday’s betting slate, however, looks quite enticing — with a few matches of note for us to chew the fat over.

Kicking off action at 6 a.m. ET, David Goffin will square off against Kyle Edmund — who is fresh off an upset win over Novak Djokovic. I distinctly remember watching a match between these two on clay a few years back in Davis Cup, where the Belgian stormed back from two sets to love down to defeat Edmund.

Clearly, Nice Guy Eddie has the tools required to beat Goffin on the dirt, which I think will end up being his best surface in a best-of-three. That said, I would need a little more value than +140 to back the Brit.

Later on, we find an all-Canadian contest featuring “Another game for Milos” Raonic and Denis Shapovalov. Raonic’s serve looked unhittable (at this altitude) against Dimitrov and he should take down his compatriot when fit, but too rich for my liking.

The John Isner-Pablo Cuevas match should be one of the most competitive of the day. I actually give a slight advantage to Cuevas, who has great control of his serve in these conditions and should edge Isner in any longer rallies. Though, in this type of match, it’ll likely come down to tiebreakers (coin flips) — for that reason, I’ll stay away. After all, you could also say the same about the conditions in Madrid aiding the serve of Big John.

While I didn’t see enough value with Edmund, Raonic and Cuevas — I did find enough in one Thursday clay clash, which brings us to our daily hitter.

YTD: 44-42 +10.23 units

Philipp Kohlschreiber (-125) vs. Kevin Anderson (+100)

Where: Madrid, Spain
Surface: Clay
When: Not before 7:30 a.m. ET
H2H: Anderson leads 2-0 (1 RET)

Well, your boy endured a nice edition of “The Morning Sickness” (the morning version of “The Night Sweats”) after backing Roberto Bautista-Agut as an underdog  vs. Phil Kohlschreiber on Wednesday morning.

I don’t really feel like rehashing this morning’s trauma, but Bautista blew match points on Kohli’s serve at 5-3 up in the third set. He was then broken two consecutive time (after attempting to serve out the match) and lost the decider 5-7.

Putting that loss in the rearview mirror, I think tomorrow presents another  prime opportunity to fade Kohli, who will play his eighth match in ten days against Anderson. Frankly, I didn’t expect the German to advance this far given the amount of mileage on his legs over the past week and a half. But after a marathon win against RBA, I expect the big serve (and heavy strokes) of KA to eventually overpower the German.

These conditions should perfectly suit Anderson’s game, as he’ll get a big boost on his serve. He’ll also have more time on the baseline to run down balls and slug away from deep positions. And given their H2H, which favors the South African, I’ll happily back “Come on Kev” at plus money against a player who shouldn’t have much left in the gas tank.

Kohl World might start out hot — but, as the match progresses, KA should exert his will over the World No. 28. Anderson pumped 25 aces — and won 82% of his first serve points (51/62) — against Mikhail Kukushkin in his last match. If he repeats that serving performance against Kohlschreiber, this one could eventually turn into one-way traffic.

THE PICK: Kevin Anderson +100


Photo via Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports