French Open Women's Day Nine Tips: Collins a false underdog for Jabeur clash

American Tennis Player Danielle Collins
Danielle Collins looks like a false underdog today...

We have more fourth round action at the French Open on Monday, and with surprise results the theme from Sunday, Dan Weston says there's plenty to discuss...

"Both players had statement wins in round three, with Jabeur pushing Aryna Sabalenka to the exit, and Collins shocking Garbine Muguruza, and I have been impressed with Collins in the last week - her win over Clara Tauson in round two was also a strong performance."

Swiatek destroys Halep and is now tournament favourite

I'm not sure I've ever seen a tournament favourite for a Grand Slam quite as comprehensively beaten as Simona Halep was yesterday by Iga Swiatek, with the Polish talent winning 6-1 6-2 in just over an hour. I've been pushing Swiatek as a player of huge potential for over a year but I didn't see this one coming at all, and quite incredibly, she's now into 3.45 for the tournament and is now favourite to lift the trophy on Saturday.

Elina Svitolina is now 4.1 second favourite after her win over Caroline Garcia, with Petra Kvitova 9/25.5 the only other player in single-digit pricing at this current stage. Just as she was regaining market support, Kiki Bertens was ousted yesterday by Martina Trevisan, and the Italian qualifier - still ranked outside the top 140 - now faces Swiatek for a place in the semi-final tomorrow.

Kvitova should have too much for Zhang

Matches begin at 1000 UK time this morning, with Kvitova facing Shuai Zhang and Laura Siegemund facing our hero from Saturday, Paula Badosa Gibert.

In those opening matches, I think Kvitova is very slightly under-rated by the market at 30/1001.31 for her clash with Zhang, given the mediocre clay data that Zhang has generated over the last few years. I'd be extremely surprised if Kvitova didn't get the job done here to progress to the quarter-finals.

If Kvitova does win today, she will face the winner of that Siegemund versus Gibert clash, and the market looks pretty accurate making Siegemund the marginal favourite to get the win here, at a current 4/51.83. Both players tend to do their best work on clay and Siegemund has strong long-term clay data - she's been under-rated numerous times on the surface in the past.

Collins looking like value for Jabeur clash

For me, the best spot for value is in match three on the schedule, which sees Ons Jabeur face Danielle Collins. Both players had statement wins in round three, with Jabeur pushing Aryna Sabalenka to the exit, and Collins shocking Garbine Muguruza, and I have been impressed with Collins in the last week - her win over Clara Tauson in round two was also a strong performance.

I'm surprised to see Jabeur as the favourite here, with the Tunisian priced at 8/111.76 on the Exchange at the current time, and I have the prices the other way around. Collins has strong clay data over the last 18 months (103% combined service/return points won) and even at the age of 26 is still progressing in her career - her ranking dropped after failing to defend semi-final points at the Australian Open this year (from her 2019 tournament). I'm not absurdly concerned about a one-off failure to defend big Grand Slam points - a gradual decline would be much more worrying - and I think Collins can outperform market expectations today.

Ferro and Kenin looks a competitive match-up

Finally, I thought I'd see Fiona Ferro as some value against Sofia Kenin but two things have happened. Firstly, Kenin improved her clay data with a 6-2 6-0 win over Irina Bara in the third round, and also, the market has realised that Ferro can test much higher ranked players on clay. Ferro is the 6/52.16 underdog for this match, which isn't hugely out of line - slight value on the Frenchwoman, but not as much as my perceived value on Collins today.

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