ATP Challenger Buenos Aires – Quarter-Final – Thiago Monteiro vs Leonardo Mayer

Yesterday’s preview looked at the Pedro Sousa vs Juan Pablo Paz match in Buenos Aires and our recommendation of Sousa -4 games ended in a push, following a 7-5 7-5 victory. We continue in Argentina and turn our attention to the Thiago Monteiro vs Leonardo Mayer match, which is scheduled to begin at 4pm UK time, and this match forms today’s tennis handicap betting proposition.

The young Brazilian, Monteiro, has featured in several previews this year and make no mistake, the 22-year-old has clay statistics that impress greatl and are improving fast. These would rank him around the top 40-50 on clay, so at this level he is clearly a major threat.

Today, Monteiro takes on the home favourite, the ATP main tour veteran Leonardo Mayer, and I’m backing the youngster to spring a surprise…

The Prices

Mayer starts as favourite at around 1.50, with Monteiro currently trading at just below the 3.00 mark. These market prices are vastly different to my model pricing, which has Monteiro as a very slight favourite for this afternoon’s match.

The Tournament So Far

Monteiro has required three sets in both his opening matches, getting past Axel Michon in an epic final set tiebreak in the first round, before an impressive underdog victory over Maximo Gonzalez on Wednesday, where he came back from losing the opening set. Interestingly, my model also indicated large value on Monteiro for that match, which indicates that the market is likely to be generally under-rating him currently.

Opponent Mayer eased past the unranked lucky loser Gabriel Hidalgo, who I’ve never heard of, in the opening round, as a very heavy favourite, before an unimpressive three-set win over the 374th ranked Facundo Mena, when priced at 1.11 last night.

With both player’s having played three set matches in the second round, the extra rest day for Monteiro may also prove useful.

Hold/Break Stats

From a small sample at ATP main draw level in the last 12 months (10 matches for Monteiro and 13 matches for Mayer), Monteiro has held serve more often (82.5% vs 78.8%), and broken opponents more frequently too (21.2% vs 17.3%). When Challenger matches were also included, I generated a 91.4% vs 90.5%, in favour of Monteiro, projected hold percentages for the match. Both players are strong on serve at this level, and a little below average on return.

Historical Trends

Monteiro has performed superbly as a slight underdog, winning an impressive 10 of 18 matches priced 2.00-2.99 on clay since January 2015. Five of his eight defeats came via three sets, so he’s effectively taken at least a set in 15/18 of these matches. This line is available at 1.64 currently, and definitely merits consideration.

Furthermore, five defeats came via a margin of three games or fewer, so backing Monteiro +3 games also is of interest, considering this line is available at 1.93, for an outcome that Monteiro has either covered or pushed 15/18 times in the historical sample.

Tennis Handicap Betting Recommendation: Thiago Monteiro +1.5 sets at 1.64, and +3 games at 1.93

Prices correct at time of writing.

By @Tennisratings.

Eastbridge Sports Betting Brokerage, winners welcome!

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