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tennis | Wednesday, June 29, 2022 1:17 PM (Revised at: Thursday, June 30, 2022 1:21 PM)

Thursday's ATP Tennis Best Bet: Wimbledon, June 30th

Thursday's ATP Tennis Best Bet: Wimbledon, June 30th
Contributor: Action Plus Sports Images / Alamy Stock Photo


Thursday, June 30th, TBD UK Time

For Thursday’s men’s selection from Wimbledon, we look to a match between Jason Kubler and Dennis Novak.

With all things considered, it’s surprising to see the market price these two relatively closely, with the games handicap as low as 2.5 games. Let’s dig into why the Aussie is worth backing as the favourite in this matchup.

For starters, Kubler is in terrific form at the moment, having won 20 of his last 23 matches across all surfaces with losses to Cameron Norrie and via retirement accounting for most of the matches he dropped.

His grass form has picked up over the last two weeks as well, having needed three sets in each of his first two qualifying matches, before finding a pair of straight-sets victories in the final qualifying round and the first round of the main draw (the latter coming as a hefty underdog to Dan Evans, no less). While Novak has also won four on the trot, having had to qualify, his form has gone the other way, dispatching an ageing Federico Gaio and inexperienced Jonas Forejtek with ease, before battling the ever-mercurial Stefan Kozlov and failing to cover the handicap against clay-court specialist Facundo Bagnis.

Last season on the grass, Novak’s form was also suspect, having lost in straight sets to Steve Johnson and Ricardas Berankis, as well as a three-set loss to Altug Celikbilek. His lone wins against the big-serving, but one-dimensional Jiri Vesely and over-the-hill Yannick Maden (via retirement) aren’t the most inspiring either.

While both men have served impressively to this point on grass (though the sample size of just four matches for each must be noted), the key difference here is that Kubler is a bit more athletic than his Austrian opponent and a more natural returner.

Further, the matchup favours the flatter hitting and ability to adjust to the lower bounce that forces players to shift their ball-striking zone downwards. While Novak possesses decent power from the baseline, his game is more suited to a higher bounce – which helps explain why he’s played more on clay than hard courts (indoors and outdoor) and grass courts combined, by a wide margin.

Kubler’s ability from the baseline is also more dynamic, being more proficient at redirecting pace and moving the ball around the court. The consistent depth, along with being able to redirect pace coming at him from the other side of the net and his flat hitting on grass allows him to take time away from his opposition.

With Novak’s only edge in this one being the serve – which Kubler has shown he can keep up with, posting a service hold rate of nearly 93% this grass season – I’d have this handicap closer to -4 or -4.5 to the Aussie.

I’ll take the more dynamic player, suited to the conditions and in blistering form.

  • Selection: Kubler -2.5 games
  • Odds: 1.90 (Unibet)
  • Stakes: 5/10

More tips for KUBLER vs NOVAK

Odds are valid as of 3:30 pm on 29th June 2022. Odds may now differ. 

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