Tennis Best Bets: Picks and predictions for Friday, April 19

Zachary Cohen runs through his tennis best bets for the ATP and WTA Tours on Friday, April 19th.

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Mar 13, 2024; Indian Wells, CA, USA; Aryna Sabalenka (RUS) hits a shot as she was defeated in the fourth round by Emma Navarro (USA) in the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Tennis Best Bets for Friday, April 19th

It feels like the tennis season never slows down, but that’s a great thing for bettors. This sport offers all sorts of betting opportunities, which is why I’m going to provide you with tennis best bets as often as possible. And that continues with a run of clay-court tournaments over the next couple of months. This week, the biggest ATP and WTA tournaments are in Barcelona, Bucharest, Munich and Stuttgart. I’ll scan through all of the tournaments to find some winners, so make sure you check out my stuff this week.

I’d also strongly suggest coming back to this story throughout the day. I try to write up as many matches as I can in advance, but it’s hard to do that in an international sport. I also like to throw in some Challenger-level bets. That said, I’ll probably be adding picks to the bottom of the story. I’ll also throw them on the Pro Picks page. So, keep reading for my tennis picks and predictions for Friday, April 19th.

 

MORE: Check out our Pro Picks page for everything our experts are betting!

2024 Record: 222-235 (+22.45 units)

Thiago Seyboth Wild vs. Mariano Navone – Bucharest

Seyboth Wild beat Navone when the two met in Buenos Aires last year, but the Argentinean had won the two previous meetings between them — at the same tournament. Both of these players are at their best on clay, so this should be a fun match to watch. But it’s hard to ignore that Navone hasn’t played a match off the dirt since the Australian Open. Navone has been training on clay and playing nothing but clay-court tournaments, and he has now played 22 clay-court matches in 2024. Meanwhile, Seyboth Wild just returned to the dirt after having played the Sunshine Double on hard courts. And he looked a little sluggish in a three-set win over Luca Nardi in his first match here.

Navone’s edge in clay-court reps could make all the difference in the world here. Seyboth Wild has more weapons than his opponent, but he will have a small margin for error against Navone here. Navone is a good defensive player and knows how to construct points, so he can extract a lot of mistakes out of Seyboth Wild’s racquet. That’s ultimately why I give a small edge to Navone. I trust him to make more balls and dial up the aggression when the moment is right. Navone is also a better returner than Seyboth Wild, so he should have more opportunities to break.

Bet: Navone ML (-111)

NOTE: This match was supposed to be played on Thursday, but it got pushed back and is now scheduled for 3:00 am ET on Friday. I’m sticking with Navone ML.

Marc-Andrea Huesler vs. Holger Rune – Munich

Huesler has only played four ATP-level matches in 2024, at least in the main draw. The 27-year-old is also just 6-16 on clay in his ATP career. That 27.3% winning percentage is the worst he has on any of the three surfaces, although he has played only seven tour-level matches on grass. Either way, we’re talking about a player that lacks experience against the best players in the world, and he has already played four matches in Munich this week. So, fatigue could be a factor when he takes on Rune, who is far more talented to begin with.

Huesler has actually earned wins over Rune before, as he beat him on clay in Bastad in 2022 and got him again on hard courts in Sofia later in the year. But Rune beat him 7-6 (2), 6-2 in their most recent meeting, which took place in Montpellier last February. Rune is no longer going to let this type of matchup sneak up on him. And the 20-year-old is a fantastic clay-court player, and he’s only getting better with Patrick Mouratoglou along for the ride. Mouratoglou has his faults as a coach, but he has seen and done everything. His presence will continue to make Rune sharper.

Rune also has a hold percentage of 82.0% and break percentage of 25.0% on clay over the last 52 weeks. In that same span, Huesler’s hold percentage is 71.9% and his break percentage is 13.9% on the surface. That’s a significant edge for Rune in two of the most important areas of the game, and the youngster also has a big advantage from the baseline. So, as long as Rune is dialed in mentally, he should win this match easily.

Bet: Rune -1.5 Sets (-139)

Magda Linette vs. Arantxa Rus – Rouen

I’m not going to put a lot on a match like this, but I do think the wrong player is favored here. Rus did beat Linette in their only other WTA-level meeting, but that was a hard-court match at the 2020 Australian Open. That was a very, very long time ago, so it’s hard to take anything from it.

Rus did earn a win over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova last round, so that might be why people are high on her right now. But the Russian got sloppy in that match and gift-wrapped Rus a victory. Things won’t be as easy against Linette. Whereas Pavlyuchenkova has raw power from the baseline and can occasionally be erratic with her groundstrokes, Linette makes her matches ugly. She utilizes a lot of slice to get her opponents out of position, and then she hits to the open court. So, Linette isn’t likely to rack up unforced errors or do anything to harm herself here. Instead, she’ll try and force some mistakes out of Rus, who can be a little overaggressive at times.

Rus is also due for some regression as a server here. Her first-serve percentage has been below 70.0% in each of the last two seasons, but she has made at least 72.8% of her first serves in each of her last two matches. Look for that number to come down a bit against Linette. But even if it doesn’t, Linette is a really good returner. She’s going to find a way to get balls back and force Rus to win in the mud.

Bet: Linette ML (+102)

Marketa Vondrousova vs. Aryna Sabalenka – Stuttgart

I never feel great giving out big moneyline favorites, but I’ve been running hot lately and would be alright with losing a small chunk on a pick I really like. With that in mind, I’m drinking some juice and taking Sabalenka to beat Vondrousova. The reality here is that it’s hard to overlook the fact that Sabalenka has won four matches in a row against Vondrousova. And two of the last three victories were straight-set wins. This is also the first meeting between the two on clay, where I believe Sabalenka has a pretty big edge. I know the Belarusian isn’t quite Iga Swiatek on the dirt, but these conditions do make her very tough to play against.

Sabalenka has the ability to hit through anybody and it doesn’t matter how slow the courts are. So, her power is going to be an issue for Vondrousova here. Meanwhile, Vondrousova might be a crafty player with a ton of variety, but all of her shots will be slower on the clay. That will give Sabalenka the ability to track them down and either extend points or hit clean winners.

It’s also worth noting that Vondrousova might be sixth on tour in clay-court break percentage over the last 52 weeks, but not many WTA players have Sabalenka’s pop when it’s time to serve. So, if Sabalenka is making a decent number of first serves, she shouldn’t have much of a problem here.

Overall, I feel better about dealing with the bad price on the moneyline than taking a game or set spread. Sabalenka is prone to playing a bad set here and there, so I’d rather not deal with that. But I trust her to emerge in the long run.

Bet: Sabalenka ML (-172 – 1.5 units)

Added Plays

Ricardas Berankis +4.5 Games (-139 – 1.5 units) vs. Yunchaokete Bu [Gwangju Challenger]

Thursday’s Plays

Click here.

VSiN Tennis Betting Splits

Tennis Odds

Gill Alexander’s Beating The Book Podcast