ATP Tennis Betting Picks: Paris Masters Day 1

November 1, 2020

The Rolex Paris Masters kick off on Monday. The final Masters 1000 event of the year gives players the chance to secure some much needed ranking points before the end of the season. But this event is also the last tennis that some players take part in in a year, which can lead to some wild upsets. In this edition of tennis betting picks, we focus on a Paris Masters match that features a former champion of this event.

Alejandro Davidovich Fokina vs. Karen Khachanov

Typically a clay court specialist, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina has had a very respectable indoor hard court swing after the French Open. The Spaniard has won at least two matches in each of the Cologne events. He has also had to win two matches in Paris already, as he needed to get through the qualifying rounds in order to make it to the main draw in this event.

Davidovich Fokina has already defeated some respectable names this indoor hard court run. He took down Marin Cilic, Emil Ruusuvuori and Steve Johnson in Cologne. He also played some competitive tennis in losses to Sascha Zverev and Diego Schwartzman, who Davidovich Fokina really should have beaten. While his opponent has some positive history in Paris, Davidovich Fokina has the momentum at this point in time.

Karen Khachanov managed to win the Rolex Paris Masters in 2018. He got the better of Novak Djokovic in the final match in that tournament, stunning the tennis world in the process. It would be an even bigger stunner if Khachanov managed to win the tournament this year. His form has been all over the place during the indoor hard court swing in 2020, and this event could end what has been an enigmatic few weeks from the Russian.

Khachanov won two matches against lesser opponents on home soil in St. Petersburg to start this swing. He then fell to Milos Raonic in the third round of that tournament. Since then, Khachanov has gone 1-2 in his last three matches. The lone win came against Zizou Bergs in Antwerp, where Khachanov needed three sets to fight off a Belgian wild card who is ranked worse than 500th in the world.

To be fair to Khachanov, his three losses during this portion of the season have come against some in form competitors. Milos Raonic was playing great tennis before injuries wore him down. Dan Evans and Grigor Dimitrov, who Khachanov lost to in Antwerp and Vienna, have been making deep runs in the recent indoor tournaments. But Davidovich Fokina is also in form, meaning that Khachanov will have to be on his game to avoid another early ouster.

These two players have never met in a competitive match. But you can expect a competitive match when they take the court in Paris. Davidovich Fokina’s game style should be able to frustrate Khachanov, even if the Russian has the more potent weapons to work with both with his serve and his groundstrokes. This match will see some drama, and the over 22.5 service games should come in safely.

Pick: Over 22.5 service games played (-109)

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Tennis Betting FAQ

Why is the Paris Masters so important?

As the final Masters 1000 event of the year, the Paris Masters is the last chance that most players have to rack up huge ranking points in a season. Unless a player qualifies for the year-end tour finals, they will have to wait until next year’s Australian Open to be able to earn this many points in a single event.

So then why do some players not play their best?

While the Paris Masters is an important tournament, it is also the last tournament on the schedule for many players in a season. That means that some players already have an eye on a vacation, or at least some much-needed rest after a grueling season. In this COVID-19 shortened season, it will be interesting to see how players approach this event.

Are there still tour finals spots up for grabs?

There is currently one spot remaining in the year-end tour finals. Diego Schwartzman is in the driver’s seat for that spot at the moment. But titles from Matteo Berrettini, David Goffin or Pablo Carreno-Busta could result in that spot being snatched away from Schwartzman at the last possible moment of the season.

Jay
Jay Sanin
Jay Sanin is a sports writer and broadcaster from Albany, NY. He has covered sports betting and the gambling industry since 2013.