Everyone loves a seed going out early at Wimbledon, right?
Well, we certainly do at bwinbetting HQ, so we decided to highlight five who could be set for no more than a flying visit to SW19 – and hopefully making you some money along the way.
If you agree with any of the tips below, simply click here to see all our Wimbledon odds and place your bets.
Bernard Tomic to beat Sam Querrey @ 11/10
Long touted as a potential star of the future, Bernard Tomic is still far from the finished article but there are signs that the 20-year-old could be ready to send 21st seed Sam Querrey packing on Tuesday.
He showed flashes of genius at times during his run to the quarter-finals at Eastbourne last week and if his mind is properly focused on the job – which is not always the case, it must be said – he will give the American an almighty battle.
As ever, serving well will be crucial for success on the lawns of SW19 and while Querrey is regularly hailed for his prowess in this department, statistics actually suggest that Tomic – a Wimbledon quarter-finalist in 2011, lest we forget – has a more fearsome delivery.
The enigmatic Aussie has won a highly impressive 86% of his service games in 2013, a record which only seven players in the world can beat – and this despite his relatively modest ranking of 58.
Of course, it does therefore follow that he struggles in return games, which could be an issue against Querrey, but with an excellent 68% first serve percentage also next to his name, he won’t be easy to break either.
So a long match with a couple of tie-breaks can probably be expected but at odds-against, Tomic, with his superior movement, shot-making ability and variation, looks a value punt to get the job done.
Denis Istomin to beat Andreas Seppi @ 33/20
I must admit that this one comes with a bit of a health warning as Denis Istomin is about as predictable as the British weather, but I like the price on him getting a first-round Wimbledon win over 23rd seed Andreas Seppi for the second year in a row.
Yes, remarkable as it may seem, the duo were pitted together at this stage in 2012, when Istomin clinched a real thriller 8-6 in the fifth set.
They also met at this year’s Australian Open and although Seppi prevailed, five sets were again required to separate two players who are clearly more evenly matched than a price of 33/20 on Istomin suggests.
Much like Tomic, Istomin is capable of toppling all but the very best opponents when he is on form and his big serve – 81% of games won on his own delivery in 2013, compared to 77% for Seppi – could be the key factor.
Further evidence that the Uzbek feels perfectly at home on the grass is provided by the fact that after beating Seppi, he progressed to the fourth round at SW19 last year, eventually losing in five tight sets to Mikhail Youznhy.
So while there’s a touch of Goran Ivanisevic’s famous tennis schizophrenia – ‘Good Goran’ and ‘Bad Goran’ – about Istomin, let’s have a go on ‘Good Denis’ claiming another hard-fought success at the All England Club.
Alison Riske to beat Romina Oprandi @ 11/25
Alison Riske is not exactly a household name but the statistics suggest she has a great chance of dumping Romina Oprandi – who isn’t exactly a household name either, if we’re being brutally honest – out of the tournament.
Despite being ranked outside the top 100, the young American reached the semi-finals at Birmingham recently, putting out established grass-court competitors such as Tamira Paszek and Sabine Lisicki along the way.
Established grass-court competitor is about the last phrase you would use to describe 31st seed Oprandi, who has won just two matches at Wimbledon in four visits and is far more at home on clay.
Tennis is all about match-ups and this just seems to be a good one for Riske, who has beaten the Swiss in their two career meetings, both of which took place in England, with one, at Nottingham in 2011, coming on grass.
Of course, the bookies have done their homework and actually make Oprandi the 33/20 outsider, even though she is a full 92 places higher than her opponent in the WTA Tour rankings.
But Riske should be good enough to deliver on her odds-on quote and perhaps taking her to win in straight sets – as she did in those two previous clashes – is the way to go at 11/10 if you feel the straight 11/25 price on her is too short.
Jamie Hampton to beat Sloane Stephens @ 13/20
American tennis is crying out for a potential long-term successor to Serena Williams and the two most likely candidates have been paired together in round one at Wimbledon.
Sloane Stephens shot to prominence by beating Williams in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open in January and is widely regarded as a future top-ten regular.
However, I have a suspicion that the under-rated Jamie Hampton, who is enjoying the best year of her career, could have the edge in what is likely to be a tight and keenly-fought encounter.
A look at Stephens’ recent activity shows that she has not been in action since losing in the last 16 of the French Open over a month ago, so this will be her first grass-court match of the season.
That must place a huge question mark over her ability to adapt quickly to the different conditions, whereas Hampton is match-tight on the green stuff after an impressive run in Eastbourne last week.
Having battled through qualifying, she then took out top-ten stars Agnieszka Radwanska and Caroline Wozniacki as she blazed her way to the final, eventually being beaten by Elena Vesnina in near-farcical wind at Devonshire Park.
So she will not be daunted by facing Stephens and although the price is perhaps not as long as you would expect, she could well push the 17th seed through the exit door.
Tsvetana Pironkova to beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova @ 39/50
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova is another seed who could be vulnerable when she plays former Wimbledon semi-finalist Tvetana Pironkova.
Pavlyuchenkova has huge potential and looked as though she was heading inexorably for the top ten a short while ago after winning clay-court tournaments in Oeiras and Monterrey, but her form has fallen off a cliff recently.
A victory over Andrea Hvalackova at the French Open is her only win in her last four outings and she has not been seen since losing to Petra Cetkovska, then ranked 198 in the world, in the second round at Roland Garros a month ago.
That lack of recent success and game time on the grass will be a problem against Pironkova, who is never easy to get past at SW19 and arrives fresh from a run to the quarter-finals last week at s’Hertogenbosch.
Pironkova has Wimbledon wins over the likes of Vera Zvonareva and Venus Williams (twice) on her record and if she produces the kind of tennis that got her to the last four here in 2010 and the last eight in 2011, then she will be more than a match for Pavlyuchenkova.
The Russian has a tendency to blow hot and cold, but the latter version is surely more likely on the basis of her recent form and the way the tenacious Pironkova – who also won their only previous meeting four years ago – will get under her skin if the errors start flowing.