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Miami Masters: Can Almagro Stop Roddick in his Tracks?

The upset bug wrecking havoc with the draw at the Miami Masters hasn't discriminated between victims, claiming a handful of top players already. Most recently, Roger Federer was sent to the exit queue, after Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray filed past earlier.

Under the circumstances, the tipping question is whether Roddick is the next top seed to join the mass exodus. To put a finer point on it: Can Almagro stop Roddick from reaching a second consecutive Masters semi in as much time.

Top British Bookmaker, William Hill opened the trading floor with over 20 markets on the exchange.  Naturally, Roddick with all his top ten pretensions is the favourite to win outright, at offerings of 1/6; while Almagro is a distinct puppy, at offerings of 7/2.

It will be the first career meeting between the pair. Fascinating though it might be that they haven’t met yet on the PRO Tour, there is a reason for it. 

First, they rank considerably far apart in the ATP so, for them to collide they could only meet in the late stages of the draw –as they are in Miami. 

Secondly, they specialize on different surfaces. Almagro is a clay-court guru and Roddick a hard-court specialist. As each player enjoys limited success on the other’s favourite surface, the opportunity hasn’t presented itself; that is, until now. Largely, because Almagro is enjoying a standout stint on hard courts, by his standards: his most recent showing – a R16 finish at Indian Wells (l. to Murray on retirement).

Almagro has gone one better in Miami but few would back him to go further with A-Rod standing in his way.

Andy is enjoying a standout term so far. He leads the ATP Tour in match wins at 23-4 and he has one title on the season in Brisbane. He was a runner-up in Indian Wells a fortnight ago and he has a runner-up finish in San Jose this season as well. Other highlights include a quarterfinal appearance in Melbourne.

Put against Almagro, who is 9-6 on the term with a R16 finish as his best showing on hard courts – Aussie Open and Indian Wells and you get the picture. Roddick is the smart play and Almagro is the long shot bet.

This is not to suggest that tennis bettors shouldn’t buck the trend but only to state the status quo. Certainly, another upset wouldn’t be out of order. Upsets have been rampant in Miami after all and Roddick isn’t any less susceptible than Federer is. If anything, I would say he is more vulnerable. Anything is possible. 

Over and above the outright win market, William Hill has a wide selection of markets specific to each players performance, from set betting to games betting and more, there is plenty of value to be had. 

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