ATP Nottingham Tennis Preview
The ATP Nottingham was reintroduced onto the ATP Tour in 2015, after only being a Challenger Tour Event from 2009 to 2014. It is the last chance for players to get some all-important grass-court practise in before Wimbledon starts next week, though none of the world’s top-10 are in attendance. The Top-seed is world number-20 Kevin Anderson, whilst last year’s finalists Denis Istomin and Sam Querrey both return.
South African Kevin Anderson is certainly no mug on grass, and he won the first two-sets against world number-1 Nova Djokovic at Wimbledon last year, before the Serb fought back and went on to win the title, and if he’s got his serve in top-form he’s lethal. However, he’s not been in the best form of his life this season, and faces some potentially tricky opponents in his quarter in the shape of last year’s winner Istomin, Steve Johnson, and Pospisil – and Pospisil could be value to progress to the semi-finals.
Joao Sousa is the top-seed in the second quarter but, as he’s much better on clay, it will be the unseeded Adrian Mannarino who will be fancying his chances of making it to the semi-finals from the weakest looking quarter of the draw, in which the other seeded player is Seppi.
Kyle Edmund was beaten by Any Murray last week at Queens, but there’s nobody of that calibre in here. The young Englishmen will be keen to make it to the latter stages of the tournament in front of his home crowd, but both Gilles Muller and Alexandr Dolgopolov may prove too strong for him, with Dolgopolov given the vote to win the quarter.
Pablo Cuevas is the top-seed in the bottom quarter, but both Querrey and Baghdatis have better grass-court form. Querrey played especially well here last year, and his big serve can be a lethal weapon in these best-of-three-sets matches.
Pospisil played some decent matches at Wimbledon last year and, after playing okay at Queens until losing to Donald Young, he may well be able to out-power Mannarino. Meanwhile, Querrey has beaten Dolgopolov the last three times they’ve met, including in last year’s semi-finals.
Querrey and Pospisil have met twice before, and the score between the two stands at 1-1. However, Querrey won their one grass-court match, and was 2-1 up before losing 3-2 in last year’s Australian Open. Therefore, Querrey looks the main bet at 8/1 (Betfred), though Pospisil looks worth a saver at 40/1 (Coral).