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tennis | Monday, January 16, 2023 9:27 AM

Monday Tennis Best Bet: ATP Australian Open, Ben Shelton vs Zhizhen Zhang

Monday Tennis Best Bet: ATP Australian Open, Ben Shelton vs Zhizhen Zhang
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Ben Shelton vs Zhizhen Zhang Best Bet: Monday, January 16th

What a remarkable collapse from Cameron Norrie who led by a set, and then had four break points for the double break we needed in the third set to win by four or more games. To make matters worse, he lost the match (and title) along with blowing the cover.

As we head into a new week, we get to comb over an incredible number of matches, as the year’s first grand slam is upon us at the Australian Open! For our first selection from the men’s draw, we’ll look at the match between Ben Shelton and Zhizhen Zhang.

In this article:


Ben Shelton vs Zhizhen Zhang Preview

January 17th, 2:00 (UK Time)

This one is a popcorn match of a first rounder, even if neither guy is all that well known.

Two of the 2022 season’s standout players at the Challenger Tour level, Shelton and Zhang both offer some incredible ball striking off the forehand wing, both should find a lot of success winning points behind their strong first serves on a quicker surface, and both are good movers along the baseline.

Zhang’s rock-solid backhand should also help him deal with the deluge of massive southpaw forehands he’s sure to encounter.

The young American has the bigger, more eye-catching weapons, but the talent is still raw, his ability to construct points could still use a bit of work. Zhang, on the other hand, still has some pop of his own, but his ability to precisely locate his shots, work the perimeters of the court and his edge in the consistency department should help him keep this one close and level the playing field.

I’m excited to watch this as a fan, and also think we should see a long, exciting and (most importantly from a betting perspective) close affair.


Ben Shelton vs Zhizhen Zhang Best Bet

The over 3.5 sets market appeals to me here, even at the 1.60 odds on offer. It is highly unlikely we see a dominant match from either side.

Shelton is simply far too talented to have him lose in straight sets in a best-of-five format all that often, and Zhang has weapons of his own to take advantage of the lacklustre return game of his opponent on a quicker surface.

Considering this is likely to be a serve-happy matchup, however, if we get to four sets, it’s very likely we see a tiebreak, 12-game set or slew of 10-game sets along the way. For that reason, I’m going to back the over in the games market at a less expensive price point instead.

  • Selection: Over 39 Games
  • Best Odds: 1.88 (Pinnacle)
  • Stakes: 3/10

Odds as at 10:15 pm on January 15th, 2022. Odds may now differ.


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