ATP Buenos Aires Odds, Picks | Best Bets For Thiem vs Varillas, Cerundolo vs Munar (Thursday, Feb. 16)
Marcelo Endelli/Getty. Pictured: Dominic Thiem.
ATP Buenos Aires continues to produce incredible tennis and the fun continues on Thursday.
I’ve found value on two of Thursday’s interesting matches, featuring Thiem vs Varillas and Cerundolo vs Munar.
Read on for my Buenos Aires picks and predictions.
Note: Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches and seeing tennis odds.
ATP Buenos Aires Odds, Picks
Dominic Thiem (-210) vs. Juan Pablo Varillas (+160)
11:30 a.m. ET
Dominic Thiem started Buenos Aires strong, defeating Alex Molcan 7-6(4), 6-3. Thiem won 69% of his service points and was broken just once. He did win just 33% of his return points, but he managed to break twice, winning some crucial return points.
A two-time Roland Garros finalist, Thiem is certainly pleased to be back on clay after an 0-4 start to the season on hard. He is an incredible 243-90 as a professional on clay.
The Austrian is very fit and moves well. He hits his spots on serve, spreads the court nicely and can overpower his opponents from both wings, but especially with his backhand. While Thiem can overhit at times, when he’s able to land his groundstrokes he is very dangerous.
Juan Pablo Varillas beat Joao Sousa 6-2, 7-5 in the opening round of Buenos Aires. Despite winning just 45% of his second serves, Varillas won 77% of his first serves. The Peruvian was also all over Sousa’s serve, winning 49% of his return points and breaking on five occasions.
Varillas is now 6-4 on the year overall, including a 4-2 record on clay this season. He is historically a strong clay-court player, with a 343-203 career-record on the dirt.
He has a fairly big first serve, but the Peruvian’s game is based around his heavy forehand. Varillas dictates play with his forehand and puts his opponents on the defensive. However, Varillas’ backhand is inconsistent, he doesn’t play with much variety and he often looks stiff when on the court.
Thiem is the more dynamic player of the two. He can match Varillas’ power from the baseline while also playing with a higher rally tolerance and better variety.
The former Slam champion will be able to absorb Varillas’ power from his forehand. With the placement and power of Thiem’s groundstrokes, he will be able to punish Varillas’ weaker backhand wing.
Finally, when looking at Elo ratings, Thiem’s overall Elo is 140.8 points higher than Varillas’ and his clay-court Elo is 99.5 points above the Peruvian’s.
Pick: Thiem -2.5 games (-125 via PointsBet)
Francisco Cerundolo (-162) vs. Jaume Munar (+138)
1 p.m. ET
Francisco Cerundolo survived a tough opener in Buenos Aires, defeating Yannick Hanfmann 6-2, 4-6, 7-5.
Cerundolo had to dig deep after going down *3-5 15-30 in the third. The Argentine won just 59% of his first serves and was broken three times. However, he won 39% of his first-serve returns and 57% of his second-serve returns, breaking five times.
He has gone just 5-4 to start 2023, including a 2-1 record on clay. As a professional, though, Cerundolo is an impressive 217-86 on the dirt. He has a massive forehand with excellent pop that he uses to control the baseline. In addition, he moves well and can turn the tide in neutral-ball rallies quickly.
However, Cerundolo’s backhand is inconsistent and he has not looked like himself during the Golden Swing so far. In Cordoba last week, Cerundolo retired in his quarterfinal match against Federico Coria due to his hamstring.
Jaume Munar beat Guido Pella 6-4, 7-5 to kick off his Buenos Aires campaign. Munar won just 56% of his service points and was broken four times. but he did win an astonishing 54% of his return points and broke on six occasions.
Munar is certainly happy to get back onto clay, as he started the season 0-3 (all on hard) before this win in Buenos Aires. Munar is 266-136 on clay in his career, showcasing his prowess on the dirt.
While Munar doesn’t have any huge weapons, he’s a huge fighter on court. The Spaniard is extremely quick, anticipates well and is physically fit. He gets consistent depth on his groundstrokes and can hit into openings when given the opportunity, especially with his forehand.
Cerundolo has been erratic from the baseline during the Golden Swing so far and is frequently going in and out of matches mentally.
This type of play is exactly what Munar is looking for. The Spaniard, with his consistency and movement, will get a ton of balls back and force Cerundolo into long rallies.
The Argentine will become frustrated from the baseline and press, trying to hit through Munar’s defenses.
And, given Munar’s physicality on court, I also question whether an injured-looking Cerundolo will be able to keep up fitness-wise.
Pick: Munar ML (+138 via FanDuel)
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