On day seven of the 2018 US Open, it's the start of the women's singles fourth round. With all four ties looking superb, our tennis columnist, Dan Weston, checks out the value...
"Looking at hard court data in the last 12 months, there’s very little to split the duo and in what looks to be an even-money match to me, I’ll recommend the underdog, Pliskova here."
Vondrousova nicks underdog win for Saturday's recommendation
After a topsy-turvy opening week in New York, we picked up a superb long-shot winner last night as the heavy underdog, Marketa Vondrousova, nicked two tiebreaks to oust Kiki Bertens in three sets. Not only did Bertens exit the event, but so did Petra Kvitova and Angelique Kerber, creating movement in the outright draw, although unfortunately, one of our pre-tournament picks, the [80.0] Caroline Garcia, was knocked out by Carla Suarez Navarro.
Williams and Sabalenka with outright market support
Serena Williams is the main beneficiary of this - she had the luxury of a day off competitive action yesterday and saw her position as the market leader get stronger without even having to pick up her racquet - she's now into [3.40] to be the tournament winner. Aryna Sabalenka, into [11.5], is the main flyer in the market, and the 20 year old from Belarus looks to have huge potential.
Kanepi with the ability to cause Williams a headache
Williams continues her campaign tonight with her fourth round tie with Kaia Kanepi, with the Estonian, Kanepi, having already eliminated Williams' pre-tournament co-favourite, Simona Halep, in round one.
Despite playing a rather light schedule, Kanepi is not to be under-rated here - her hard court data is very solid indeed, and while Williams' is better, it's not nearly at her peak levels (even though she's played well this week). Williams is [1.20] to get the win, and I make this a touch short - Kanepi isn't without a chance of making this very competitive, at least.
Pliskova value in even-money match-up
However, the match I want to focus on from a value perspective is Ash Barty versus Karolina Pliskova, with Barty the [1.82] favourite. Both players have yet to drop a set this week, with Barty arguably the more impressive, but I still think this struggles to justify the market line.
Looking at hard court data in the last 12 months, there's very little to split the duo and in what looks to be an even-money match to me, I'll recommend the underdog, Pliskova here at [2.20].
Stephens can be tested by Mertens
In Sunday's other matches, defending champion Sloane Stephens is a [1.56] favourite against Elise Mertens, who continues to improve. Stephens looks a touch short - she's not often value to me, in truth - but there's not enough on Mertens to be interested in. It will be interesting, however, to see how Mertens can perform - she's another one that I wouldn't be surprised if they gave the higher-profile player a tough match.
Outright pick Svitolina favourite against Sevastova
Finally, our other outright pick, Elina Svitolina, is [1.48] to get past Anastasia Sevastova, and I make this pretty much spot on. From a pre-tournament [24.0], Svitolina is into [11.0] in the outright market currently, and should continue to shorten nicely if she can make Tuesday's quarter-finals.
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