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And So It Goes....

Overall: 7-1-0 (0.875)
Basis Function: Daubechies4

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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

June 24th, 2009 Picks

(skip to picks)1-2-0 today, but at least I finished with a win. Murray was a choking bloke as he double faulted at the most inopportune times (in the tie break he lost and on a break point for Kendrick) but otherwise it was a very close matchup. Oh and Chandry played on a hurt ankle after the set he won, but oh well. I then lost on 2 goals or fewer which was looking good until two goals were scored in the 1st half injury time. Finally some luck went my way with the Tigers getting the last laugh in the home run derby at the end of that game. Roight! On to the picks.


Roddick Rolls Over Chardy After Dropping 3rd Set
Andy Roddick def. Jeremy Chardy 6-3 7-6(7-3) 4-6 6-3
Murray Falters In Tiebreak, Breaks Kendrick Afterwards
Andy Murray def. Robert Kendrick 7-5 6-7(3-7) 6-3 6-4
Andy Roddick was fairly dominant for most of the match though he was fortunate to avoid a fifth set after Chardy found his game.
``Andy Roddick’s reputation as one of the strongest and fastest servers in the game was underlined yet again as he powered down 21 aces during a 6-3, 7-6 (7-3), 4-6, 6-3 win over France’s Jeremy Chardy. At first it seemed as if Chardy, the Wimbledon junior champion two years ago, was going to be overwhelmed by Roddick’s aggressive urgency, which took the American into a 5-0 lead in a matter of minutes. But Chardy was far from beaten and responded magnificently by winning the third set, breaking serve in the ninth game and then holding with a pair of service winners after 103 minutes. But it came at a cost as Chardy needed attention to his ankle at the end of the set."
Read more....Box ScorePost-Match Interview
Andy Murray looked a bit nervous out there, evidenced by his inopportune double faults, but he broke serve more than enough to win the match.
``Kendrick has the sort of game that is brilliant when it works and a liability when it is slightly off. He can serve like a rocket, he can hit the ball so hard that you would think it could pierce concrete – and he had absolutely nothing to lose. As he grabbed back the break of serve, he started flinging himself around the court like a teenage Boris Becker and had clearly decided that attack was the best form of defence. If Kendrick was going to win, he would have to try every trick in the book; if he was going to lose, he was determined to enjoy his time on the main show court. Even when Murray took the first set, the American would not go away and chased Britain’s great hope all the way to the second set tiebreak and beyond. Only in the fourth set could everyone relax and just marvel at Kendrick’s pluck and Murray’s skill."
Read more....Box ScorePost-Match Interview

Without Balotelli Acquafresca And Italy Shine, Advance
Italy 2 - 1 Belarus
A costly penalty for Belarus with the last play of the first half injury time.
``Two goals from Robert Acquafresca secured Italy's place in the UEFA European Under-21 Championship semi-finals against Germany, but despite dominating possession they were made to wait before seeing off a dogged Belarus 2-1 in Helsingborg. Belarus had stunned the five-time champions by taking the lead through Sergei Kislyak in the 45th minute only for the Azzurrini to hit back immediately through Acquafresca's penalty with the final kick of the first half. Not until the 75th minute could Italy finally begin to breathe easily. Giovinco played in Antonio Candreva who squared the ball for Acquafresca to tap in unmarked. Giovinco then hit the bar three minutes later, but Italy had already done enough. Things did not all go Italy's way, though. Claudio Marchisio was booked and will miss Friday's semi-final here through suspension while Paolo de Ceglie is a doubt after being taken off in the first half with an ankle injury."
Read more....Box ScoreThe Coach's ViewsBelarus Happy For The ExperiencePhoto Gallery

Raburn's Pinch Hit Two Run Walk Off Leads Tigers To Win Battle Of The Blown Save
Detroit Tigers 5 - 4 Chicago Cubs
Alternating two run homers from these two in the 7th, 8th, and 9th innings made this one a nailbiter down to the very end.
``Brandon Inge's two-run home run in the seventh put the Tigers ahead 3-2 and they were a strike away from taking the lead into the ninth, but Hoffpauir sent Zumaya's 85 mph pitch over the fence in right. Chicago's Micah Hoffpauir hit a go-ahead, two-run shot in the eighth inning off Joel Zumaya. "We went from a real low to a real high, to a real low and a real high," Detroit manager Jim Leyland said. Pinch-hitter Ryan Raburn hit a two-run homer in the ninth inning, lifting Detroit to a 5-4 win over the Chicago Cubs on Tuesday night. Raburn was hitting for Josh Anderson, who pinch ran for Ordonez."
Read more....Box Score

1) How Many Games Will Be Played Between Serena Williams vs. Jarmila Groth - 19 games or more
2) Who Will Record More Aces: Sam Querrey vs. Marin Cilic - Querrey
3) Spain (win by 2 goals or more) vs. United States (win or lose by 1 goal) - Spain win by 2+ goals
4) New York Yankees @ Atlanta Braves - Atlanta
5) LSU vs. Texas - Texas
6) Philadelphia Phillies @ Tampa Bay Rays: Who Will Be Winning After 5 Innings - Tampa Bay
7) St. Louis Cardinals @ New York Mets - New York
8) Minnesota Twins @ Milwaukee Brewers - Milwaukee
9) Los Angeles Dodgers @ Chicago White Sox - Chicago
10) F.C. Dallas @ Colorado Rapids - Colorado win
11) Colorado Rockies @ Los Angeles Angels - Colorado
12) San Diego Padres @ Seattle Mariners - San Diego


Serena Williams is a star while Groth is... young. What chance does Groth have? Not much. She is 0-6 against top 10 opponents and has lasted 19 games only once.
1) Serena Williams will look to continue her return to form at Wimbledon where she has gone 2-2 in the finals in the past decade. Her opponent will be Jarmila Groth, a 22 year old Australian making her third singles appearance at the grass courts of Wimbledon. Groth will be hoping against all odds she can progress to the second round for the second time against the dominating Serena. The two have met only once before in a competitive match, a hard court encounter at the Australian Open in 2008. Serena came away the victor in that match, but Groth was able to hold serve more than once losing the match in straight sets 6-3 6-3. Groth has improved her world standing since then, moving up from #145 to #69. Additionally, Groth has played in grass court tournaments the past two weekends in the run up to Wimbledon, while Williams has not competed since Roland Garros where she lost in the quarterfinals to eventual champion Svetlana Kuznetsova. Groth may be able to offer up better competition in this match, but her record against top 10 opponents suggests it will be difficult for her to extend the match to 19 games. She is 0-6 against top 10 players in her career and has lost in fewer than 18 games twice, lost in exactly 18 games three times, and lost in 21 games once, at the 2007 U.S. Open against Jelena Jankovic.
First Round Match Stats
S. Williams def.
N. Silva in 19
Groth def.
L. Safarova in 27
1st Serve78%68
1st Srv Win83%78%
2nd Srv Win70%52%
Return Win48%40%
Error/PP - Unforced errors per points played

Serena struggled a bit in their first round matches with Williams needing 19 games to dispatch Nueza Silva who is ranked in the 140s. Groth pulled off a minor upset, losing a set before dispatching #48 Lucie Safarova. I think Williams will need to take Groth very seriously if she is to win the match with the ease that 18 or fewer games would require. As long as Groth is not intimidated by playing on the big stage of Court 1 against a celebrity like Serena she should be able to hold serve 7 of 13 times, and that would be all she needs to take the match to 19 games.

Sam Querrey (left) is the underdog here (+165), but at 6'6" is one man who can stand up to Marin Cilic (right).
2) Sam Querrey and Marin Cilic are a couple of 6' 6" youngsters with powerful serves. Cilic is a decent favorite at 4/9 (-180) compared to Querrey who is being given 13/8 (+165) odds. Here, we're concerned with the number of aces each player records in the match, however, not who will win. Looking at the table below one sees that Querrey is averaging nearly 0.3 aces more per service game played. In a best 3 of 5 match there would be at least nine service games played by each player, which would come out to 2.7 more aces for Querrey.

Each player won their first round matches in straight sets, with Sam Querrey defeating #120 Danai Udomchoke 6-3 6-4 6-4, and Marin Cilic defeating #95 Alberto Martin 6-3 6-4 6-4. Querrey recorded 15 aces in his match while Cilic recorded 12 aces. Querrey is #5 on the ATP Tour this year in total aces and double faults slightly less often than Cilic, so he should not be afraid to use this weapon.

Year-To-Date Match Stats
Dbl. Fault/SG0.1950.202
Return Win35%41%
SG - Service Game; source: ATPTour.com

3) The United States faces Spain, the number one team in the world who have not been defeated in 35 matches, have won 15 straight, and have outscored their opponents 76 to 11 in those 35 matches. For the best information of this match click here for FIFA.com's coverage, which is the source for most newspapers and sites.

“A big part of playing them is not getting frustrated because you don't have the ball. The other side of that is trying to put them under pressure. That's our goal, and if we can do that we have a chance.”
---US Midfielder Landon Donovan
United States coach Bob Bradley looks primed to return Tim Howard to goal tending duties after allowing Brad Guzman to take his place for the match against Egypt, which everybody expected to be their last. Carlos Bocanegra is also a possibility to figure in the match for the US as he has returned to full training after recovering from a hamstring injury. The tougher decisions for Bradley have to do with which formation to run, and whether to start Charles Davies up front. The United States typically plays the traditional 4-4-2 formation, but found great success with Davies in the Starting XI and a move to more of a 4-2-2-2 lineup. Whatever the Yanks attempt it will be a difficult proposition to keep up with the Spanish side and though I do think they will give Spain some problems I also think Del Bosque will have his men focused on the match at hand and they will be able to prevail by 2 goals or more.

4) The New York Yankees take on the Atlanta Braves tonight a day after getting blanked 4-0 by Hanson and the bullpen trio of Moylan, Gonzalez, and Soriano. It was the second consecutive shutout for the Braves thanks in large part to outstanding pitching, by their bullpen especially. If their bullpen can continue to perform at this level they should come away victorious because the Braves will be starting Kenshin Kawakami. Unlike his Yankee counterpart, Joba Chamberlain, Kawakami has been pitching tremendously. Both pitchers went for 6 innings in their last starts, but where Chamberlain gave up 3 earned runs from 7 hits to the Washington Nationals Kawakami gave up only 2 earned runs from 4 hits to the Boston Red Sox.

The Braves and Yankees have also been on separate tracks when it comes to hitting the ball as well. New York is batting .181 with a .245 slugging average in their last three games while Atlanta is batting .296 with a .418 slugging average in theirs. Chamberlain will most likely do well and help bring down those batting numbers for Atlanta, but only enough to make the game competitive. The Yankees are likely to hit better than .181, but if Kawakami continues to pitch well it will be far too little to take this game.

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