Australian Open Women's Singles Day Three: Return-orientated duo with potential to struggle

Outright selection Caroline Wozniacki is in action against Jana Fett...
Outright selection Caroline Wozniacki is in action against Jana Fett...
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It's day three in the women's singles tournament and after a day with few shocks on Tuesday, there are many even-looking match-ups on Wednesday. Our tennis columnist, Dan Weston, previews some of the 16 matches on the schedule...

"Kasatkina, who takes on Magda Linette, has held serve just 59.0% on hard court in the last 12 months, breaking opponents 42.1% (combined 101.1%) which are stats hardly commensurate with any of her world ranking, reputation or market price."

Kvitova dumped out by Petkovic on day two

Most of Tuesday's matches went with the form book in the women's event, with Petra Kvitova being the biggest name to exit - as predicted in yesterday's preview, she struggled against Andrea Petkovic, with the German prevailing in a final set epic. Her reward for this is a winnable second round match with Lauren Davis on Thursday.

Tomorrow, several of our outright selections are in second round action, with Caroline Wozniacki a heavy favourite to get the better of Jana Fett, while Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova - already roughly halved in price from our preview - around a 70% market chance to dispose of Kateryna Bondarenko.

Kasatkina over-rated by the market against Linette

Some of the other clashes in Melbourne are fascinating - the return-orientated duo of Daria Kasatkina and Jelena Ostapenko are unlikely to favour relatively quick hard court conditions, and both have pretty mediocre records on outdoor hard in the last year.

Kasatkina, who takes on Magda Linette, has held serve just 59.0% on hard court in the last 12 months, breaking opponents 42.1% (combined 101.1%) which are stats hardly commensurate with any of her world ranking, reputation or market price.

The Russian talent is short at [1.28] to get the better of Linette, who is nothing special herself - particularly on return - but a player who has exhibited improvement in recent months. The set handicap market on the Exchange is still forming, but if we can get in excess of [2.15], this would be reasonable on Linette +1.5 sets (to win a set).

Ostapenko also vulnerable at prices against Duan

Fellow young prospect Ostapenko has had similar issues on serve on hard court, holding just 60.6% of the time in the last 12 months, and is just [1.33] to progress past the Chinese player, Ying-Ying Duan.

As with Linette, Duan is nothing special - again on return in particular - but again, it's an anti-high profile player play as opposed to me being especially enthused by either Linette or Duan. We can get Duan +1.5 sets at EVS with the Sportsbook, and that's a decent price.

Mertens a marginal favourite to oust home favourite Gavrilova

Some other exciting matches on Wednesday's card include Daria Gavrilova against Elise Mertens, with the Belgian, Mertens, a marginal favourite while a resurgent Kaia Kanepi takes on Olympic champion Monica Puig. Venus Williams' conqueror, Belinda Bencic, looks a touch short against our winner from Monday, Luksika Kumkhum and tournament favourite Elina Svitolina is in action, as she faces Katerina Siniakova.

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Follow Dan on Twitter @TennisRatings

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