The Legg Mason Open swings into action this week and the top seed will all be battling it out from Tuesday onwards. Isner, Verdasco and Troicki are all amongs the top seeds hoping to life the trophy on Sunday.

Top hopes 

Gael Monfils and Mardy Fish come into this event as the joint 11/2 favourites, however both men have headed the odds lists for other events in the last few weeks and although Mardy Fish did reach the final in LA last week, neither man has really shone all summer.

Viktor TroickiFish should perform better on the hard courts than Monfils, although in reaching the final of the Paris Masters event just last year, Monfils has proven he can do it on an indoor hard surface. 

11/2 are nice odds if you’re behind one of these two but after a full week’s work in LA for Fish and an indifferent run of form so far this summer for Monfils, my money would not be on either of these men. 

Next in the betting comes, Jurgen Melzer, who again has not been playing on top of his form this summer. His most impressive result since Wimbledon came in the shape of a quarter-final defeat to Fernando Verdasco in Germany a fortnight ago, and despite winning the doubles event in Stuttgart, 7/1 is not good enough for me to be gambling on the 30-year-old Austrian. 

Isner and Troicki 

The next two men in the tennis handicappers’ odds are Viktor Troicki and John Isner. For me it’s these two men who are most hungry for success at the moment and I’d be looking at one of them to go the distance. 

Serbian, Viktor Troicki has hugely improved his game over the last 12 months and like his compatriot, Novak Djokovic, the Serb seems to be benefitting from the confidence he gained in last November’s Davis Cup Win. 

Several of Troicki’s big hard court events this year, have seen him come up against his great friend, Novak Djokovic, just as he seemed to be putting together an impressive run. He’ll be relieved there’s no chance of him facing the Serbinator here this week and will be looking to continue his impressive climb up the rankings with a solid week here. I like his odds of 8/1 and along with Isner, he’d be my pick for this event. 

After a disappointing Wimbledon, John Isner bounced back to win just the second title of his career in Newport and with two big Master’s events and the US Open just around the corner,  Isner will be hoping to come good at just the right time. He’s playing this one in his home country and in my opinion will be one of the most motivated players in the competition. At 9/1, he’d probably be running neck and neck with Viktor Troicki in my opinion, although the home advantage may just push him through. 

Outsiders 

As ever, there are a bunch of top quality tennis players, all priced up at some very tempting odds.

Alex Bogomolov Jnr, who had a remarkable run in LA just last week, is priced up at a staggering 200/1 and Ryan Harrison, another impressive performer last week, can be backed at around 33/1. 

For me though, with the big events of the US Hard Court summer, just around the corner, this is a chance for some of the bigger names in this event to play themselves into form and I’d expect one of the top five or six names in the betting to take this one. Isner and Troicki are my picks, but don’t discount the likes of Verdasco, Nalbandian or even Janko Tipsarevic.