ATP US Open – Semi-Final – Stan Wawrinka vs Roger Federer
On an action-packed day at Flushing Meadows, the men’s semi-finals follow the rain-delayed women’s semi-finals, where yesterday’s game handicap recommendation for Serena Williams is yet to be played.
Based on my model, it’s possible to make a case for handicap bets on both of the men’s favourites being value, with Novak Djokovic having a dominant 13-0 head to head lead over Marin Cilic, and the world number one winning 34/39 sets in these meetings.
Almost as dominant is Roger Federer’s 17-3 lead over compatriot Stan Wawrinka, although it’s worth mentioning that Wawrinka’s performances in these meetings have improved in the last 18 months or so.
However, whilst these performances will undoubtedly give Wawrinka heart, Federer’s 2015 stats on hard court indicate that he will be very difficult to get the better of. Only two opponents have walked off court with a victory – Andreas Seppi’s shock triumph at the Australian Open, and Novak Djokovic on the slow courts of Indian Wells – against the Swiss legend, with 26 defeated. In these 28 matches, Federer has held serve an incredible 94.3% – better than all on Tour except the big serving duo of Ivo Karlovic and John Isner – whilst breaking opponents 31.9%. These combine to generate a stratospheric 126.2% combined, and these are legendary statistics.
These numbers make Wawrinka look very ordinary in comparison. A 17-5 record on hard courts is strong enough, with Wawrinka holding 85.6% and breaking opponents 22.1% (107.7%), but the 18.5% difference between the two players is huge, and combined with the head to head record, as well as slightly higher opponent quality for Federer, generated a model price of 1.15 about the higher ranked Swiss player, much bigger than the 1.34 available in the market.
A decent sample of price range historical statistics are hard to come by in Grand Slams, due to their infrequency, however it’s worth mentioning that all but one of Federer’s victories have come by 5 games or more when priced between 1.20 and 1.49 on hard court in Grand Slams, with a solitary 3 game win over Gael Monfils at this venue last year.
With just one win coming via the exact 5 game margin, I’m happy to go for the 1.99 about Federer to cover this line as opposed to the 1.82 on -4.5 games, and this is today’s recommendation.
Recommendation: Back Roger Federer -5 games at 1.99
Prices correct at time of writing.
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