The big guns get their Paris Masters campaigns underway today and top-seed Djokovic will play veteran G Muller for the fourth time and the world number one leads the head-to-head 3-0 so should progress without too much drama. Second seed Andy Murray starts against veteran Verdasco and leads the head-to-head 11-2, so should progress as Verdasco’s last win came back in 2009 at the Australian Open. However, the score-line could be close as their previous four matches would have landed the over games line.
Third seed Stan Wawrinka (advised 16/1) starts his campaign against qualifier Struff, whom he’s never played before. Fifth seed Nishikori opens up against Troicki and the Japanese star leads the head-to-head 5-1 and should progress without too much drama. Sixth seed Thiem faces the in-form Sock and the young Austrian leads the head-to-head 2-0 but his form has been disappointing of late and this tie could easily go either way.
Eighth seed Goffin gets his campaign underway against veteran Mahut and if, their recent encounter at Metz is anything to go by, backing the Over Games line should return a profit. Basel winner and ninth seed Cilic’s opening match is against Karlovic and, with the head-to-head standing at 2-2 and Cilic likely to be vulnerable after his exploits last week, it’s worth opposing him from a match betting or trading perspective.
Tenth seed Bautista-Agut (advised 66/1) will play Gilles Simon today and Simon leads the head-to-head 3-1 with their last meeting coming back in 2014. Vienna finalist and 11th seed Tsonga faces Ramos-Vinolas for the second time in under a week after beating him for the fifth time in a row at Vienna. The French number two leads the head-to-head 5-0 and, unless fatigue plays a factor, the best Ramos-Vinolas can hope for (in my opinion) is to win a set.
In addition to Mahut, Simon and Tsonga, Pouille (advised 80/1) seeded 13 will also hopefully benefit from home support today, as he did when winning the title in Metz recently. Today he faces veteran Lopez today, who beat him at Vienna last week 6-4 2-6 7-5 but I expect Pouille to turn the tables this time in front of his own fans. Veteran Ferrer (seeded 15) and Cuevas (seeded 16) both have comprehensive winning head-to-head records against their respective opponents Isner (7-1) and Lorenzi (4-0) today and both can be backed in a double at over 11/4, which appeals.