The Australian Open is right around the corner, and players are trying to build some confidence before the first major of the year. This somewhat small 18-game slate is filled with top tier talent on both the men and women’s tour, but who will come out on top?
The players listed below can be used in any contest, whether it’s for cash or GPP. I personally like to use the same lineup in both, since the goal is to pick players who are going to win their match. If you choose to go down the route of playing the “stars and scrubs” strategy, you might be forced to choose players who are bound to get crushed. This strategy is very risky as upsets happen quite often in tennis, and if one of your most expensive players gets beat you have a very low chance to cash. Lets get into my top 3 plays for the slate!
Note: Tennis is available on DraftKings ONLY.
Stefanos Tsitsipas $10,400
Stefanos Tsitsipas is becoming one of the top players on the ATP tour, coming off of the best season of his young career. Tsitsipas won the Next Gen ATP Finals to finish off the 2018 season and posted some stellar wins against multiple top 10 players throughout the year. The 20 year old is in an absolute smash spot today as he faces off against Guido Andreozzi, world number 80, who has found himself playing in challenger level tournaments the last 4-5 months. Tsitsipas has a 1-0 record against Andreozzi, and with an almost 90% service hold rate and a 20% break point conversion rate, Tsitsipas should have no issue putting this match away early.
Jan-Lennard Struff $10,200
Jan-Lennard Struff is a very tough player to beat, he has an excellent serve and it can punish any player on tour. I’m picking him today solely based on his opponent, Rubin Statham. Statham had the win of his career yesterday against Hyeon Chung, however Chung hasn’t been himself since undergoing surgery last season. The Australian is going to play his best in front of his home crowd again tonight, but I think it’ll be the end of his run. In Statham’s match against Chung, he won only 25% of Chung’s 1st serve points, and Struff will take advantage of that. Statham also has a tendency to double fault quite often, and that can end his night quickly against a big server.
David Ferrer $8,500
David Ferrer is playing in his last season on the ATP tour, and it looks like he’s wanting to go out with a bang. The 36 year old Spaniard absolutely demolished Robin Haase in his first round match 6-2 6-1, and he’s looking to build on that momentum going into the second round. Ferrer took Alexander Zverev, world number 4, to 3 sets last week at the Hopman Cup but fell just short in a tiebreaker. Ferrer managed to win his other 2 matches against top 50 players. Today he gets Pablo Carreno-Busta, the 27 year old from Spain. Carreno-Busta is coming off of a shaky end to his 2018 season, losing 4 consecutive matches while only winning 2 sets in total. David Ferrer is probably the toughest opponent to beat on the men’s tour, he doesn’t give up on any points and he will make you work for it. With the current form David’s in, he should be able to send Carreno-Busta out of the tournament.
Possible upset/punt plays:
Ons Jabeur $7,400
Simona Halep $7,200
Joao Sousa $6,700
Ugo Humbert $6,300
Written by: Caleb Alderman
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