Sony Ericsson Open Betting

The Men’s ATP Tour moves to the glamorous heights of Miami towards the end of March for the Sony Ericsson Open – the second Masters 1000 tournament of the hectic tennis calendar.

Crandon Park is the venue for the hard court extravaganza which follows on in quick succession from Indian Wells at the start of the month.

Also recognised as the Miami Masters, the event, like its Indian Wells equivalent, is of extreme importance to all of the players who make it there due to the hefty winner’s cheque and sizeable amount of ranking points which are at stake. Players have also voted the championship their favourite in the Masters series on six occasions over the past eight years.

Spectators also seem to share their opinion, with over 300,000 people turning out to watch some of the sport’s biggest stars for the 2011 renewal, which culminated in a three set triumph for Novak Djokovic over Rafael Nadal.

Like the city of Miami itself which came to real prominence throughout the eighties, the Sony Ericsson Open stamped its mark on the tennis calendar in the middle of that particular decade as the Lipton International Players Championship in 1985.

American Tim Mayotte was the first man to lift the title in Florida after beating fellow compatriot Scott Davis in a five set thriller. The tournament changed to a best of three sets format in 2007 at the same time Sony Ericsson administered sponsorship. Andre Agassi largely made the tournament his own, winning five times in total over the course of his glittering career.

As with other Masters events, the Sony Ericsson Open is only a step down from the four Grand Slam tournaments and this is enhanced further by its twelve day duration and 96- strong line-up. The world’s top 32 players are handed a bye through to the second phase to aid their quick turnaround after Indian Wells.

And it is that particularly quick turnaround which plays a crucial role in terms of betting and the outright winner.

It appears from the past as if many players really find their best tennis after Indian Wells and are able to carry that momentum into Miami. The prospect of a quick-fire Masters double inevitably does much to boost players’ psychological advantage over competitors as well as their bank balances heading into the clay court campaign.

Jim Courier was the first player to complete the feat in 1991 and that has subsequently been matched by Michael Chang, Pete Sampras, Marcelo Rios, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and the aforementioned Agassi.

And fitness and injuries aside, there is no real reason why the winner at Indian Wells should be opposed when betting on this tournament.

Conditions will again suit powerful players with a strong service game who are able to move about the court quickly and effectively, so this should definitely be taken on board for individual match betting as certain ties can be fathomed simply by searching for previous hard court form and results.

Although Spanish ace Rafael Nadal quite easily fits into this category, it is important to note that the Mallorcan is yet to win the tournament despite reaching the final on three occasions.

Nevertheless, the tournament has been known to lift curses in the past.

In 1989, Ivan Lendl was gifted the title by default his after opponent Thomas Muster was hit by a drunk driver on the eve of the match, a freak occurrence which put the Swiss out of the sport for a number of months.

Muster went on to gain some degree of compensation however by returning to win the event eight years on in 1997.

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