Tue, Jan 3, 2:30pm by Senior Writer
Nick Kyrgios’ path to redemption after his tanking ban looks set to roll on when the world No.13 takes on world No.75 Alex Pavlasek in the Hopman Cup on Tuesday night.
The talented but unpredictable Australian is $1.06 to collect his second win of the tournament having easily eclipsed Spain’s Feliciano Lopez 6-3 6-4 earlier this week.
Kyrgios looked in great form in that win, sweeping aside the world No.27 in just 65 minutes and faces a much easier task against Pavlasek, who is six months older than Kyrgios but ranked some 62 places below him.
Australia is expected to dominate the tie with Daria Gavrilova at $1.28 to defeat Czech Lucie Hradecka, who is ranked some 141 places below the Aussie.
The pair met in the first round of last year’s Aussie Open, with Gavrilova winning in straight sets.
Later in the week, Kyrgios will face a much tougher challenge against the world No.23 Jack Sock. Kyrgios holds a head-to-head edge against Sock, 1-0, and is rated a $1.56 to beat the American on Thursday.
Roger Federer is the other big drawcard of the tournament and after he opened his campaign for Switzerland with a 6-3 6-4 win over Great Britain’s Dan Evans, he is $1.59 favourite when he plays Alex Zverev during the tie against Germany on Wednesday.
That was the 35-year-old’s first match back from knee surgery which sidelined him for six months.
Zverev, the highest ranked teenager in the men’s game at 24, beat Federer when they met at Halle last year. Zverev looks super value at $2.37.
The Perth crowd are cheering for an Australian-Switzerland final which would pit Kyrgios against Federer.
Kyrgios is $34 to win the Australian Open later this month, something an Australian male hasn’t done since Mark Edmondson in 1976, while Federer in $19 to win his fifth Australian Open and his first since 2010.
Suggested Bet: Back Zverev to defeat Federer at $2.37
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