Quarter-finals at the US Open start today, with two ladies singles matches taking place on day nine. Our tennis columnist, Dan Weston, checks out both of tonight's match-ups...
"Williams does boast marginally better data, holding 74.0% and breaking 40.5% (combined 114.5%) this year on hard court, and with the head to head looking pretty irrelevant, I do like the American veteran's price tonight."
Stephens accurately priced by market for Sevastova quarter-final
Both of tonight's women's quarter-finals looks well-matched, and should provide bettors, traders and neutrals alike with some great action on day nine of the US Open.
In tonight's opener, scheduled for 19:00 UK time, Sloane Stephens faces Anastasija Sevastova, with the American, Stephens, a slight favourite at [1.68] to make it into the semi-finals.
As I mentioned previously, Stephens looks a little over-rated in general following her 12-2 record from Toronto onwards, but she's won all six of her deciding sets, and I'm not convinced this type of win rate is remotely sustainable.
However, for tonight's match, my model did price Stephens similar to the market, and therefore it's difficult to find an angle on this match. It may well be that a victory for Stephens will allow us an opportunity to oppose her in the semi-finals.
Kvitova head to head lead with little relevance
Should Stephens triumph tonight, she will face either Venus Williams or Petra Kvitova, with Kvitova taking a 4-1 head to head lead into their meeting. However, the last of those meetings was over three years ago, when Williams was ranked outside the top 30, and it's difficult to imagine that the head to head really is particularly relevant here, with Venus at a much higher level now.
Both players have stats that look good, rather than great, and with Kvitova's hard court sample still small, she's held serve 73.0% of the time, breaking 35.5% (combined 108.5%) across all surfaces following her return to tour in May.
Williams' better hard court data provides value
Williams does boast marginally better data, holding 74.0% and breaking 40.5% (combined 114.5%) this year on hard court, and with the head to head looking pretty irrelevant, I do like the American veteran's price tonight at [2.44].
There can be no doubt that Williams will enjoy plenty of home crowd support, and I have a suspicion that Kvitova is over-rated by the market following her defeat of the tournament favourite, Garbine Muguruza, on Sunday night.
I'd expect both players to be a favourite over Stephens in a semi-final, and I particularly expect there to be value on Williams if she does take on her countrywoman for a place in Saturday's final.
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