It's day four at the US Open and with second round action continuing in the women's singles, our tennis columnist, Dan Weston, is back to discuss the value on the card...
"Linette won all five main draw matches as an underdog in New York plus three qualifiers, and while that's some achievement for sure, it's surely fair to discuss her own potential physical issues which will likely stem from such an arduous schedule - she must be shattered!"
Sevastova forced to wait after day three delays
Our pick from yesterday, Anastasija Sevastova, was forced to wait until this evening to face Iga Swiatek after a day which was largely ruined by the weather. However, our Q3 outright pick, Karolina Pliskova, made it through to round three with ease, defeating our hero from Monday, Mariam Bolkvadze in straight sets. There were also wins for Elina Svitolina, Madison Keys, Ashleigh Barty and Serena Williams in the matches which did get played. Williams had to tough out three sets against the young prospect, Catherine McNally, losing the first set before coming through the next two.
Bolsova with underdog potential against Cirstea
As with the men's schedule today, it's a fairly tricky card with there only being a few options when it comes to looking for value. Aliona Bolsova doesn't have the biggest sample of hard court matches but from the numbers I can generate, looks reasonable value at [2.14] against Sorana Cirstea, who has really struggled this season.
Alison unlikely to be a Riske even as favourite
In addition, it's a mark of Alison Riske's improvement that she's priced up at [1.50] against Jelena Ostapenko, a line which was actually higher than my model price.
I read with interest that Riske has appointed an analyst to help her and whether this has had any impact with her results is tough to ascertain, but she's certainly had a solid year, running at 104% combined hold/break on hard court.
These numbers considerably outweigh anything that Ostapenko has managed. The former French Open winner has barely held serve 50% of the time on hard court this season and her serve looks a real issue in general. Unless you've got a world class return, these numbers are always going to cause a poor winrate on the main tour.
Osaka value against fatigued Linette
However, the match I'm looking at for today's recommendation is Naomi Osaka against Magda Linette. World number one Osaka is very defensively priced at [1.42] on the Exchange, and while some of this will be due to fitness doubts following retirement against Sofia Kenin in Cincinnati, I also think there's a case to be made for recency bias towards Linette after her shock tournament win in the New York warm-up event last week.
Linette won all five main draw matches as an underdog in New York plus three qualifiers, and while that's some achievement for sure, it's surely fair to discuss her own potential physical issues which will likely stem from such an arduous schedule - she must be shattered!
With fitness issues in mind as well for Osaka, taking her on the game handicap makes a lot of sense (it will be voided if there is a retirement) and I'm tempted to look at the [2.10] about her giving up a 4.5 game head start - which she's covered more often than not in hard court wins in matches where she's similarly priced. Those who are patient are likely to get several more ticks in the run-up to the match, in line with best prices in the general market.
Halep again too short as a heavy favourite
In other matches, market favourite Cori Gauff is a slight favourite to get past Timea Babos, which is actually a line I do agree with (a rarity for Gauff's matches currently) while Simona Halep, who looked vulnerable against Nicole Gibbs in her opener again looks very short at [1.13] against Taylor Townsend. We also see our Q2 selection, Bianca Andreescu, back in action, and she's correctly priced at a similar line to Halep against the Belgian veteran, Kirsten Flipkens.
Follow Dan on Twitter @TennisRatings
Dan's US Open P&L:-
5 Units Staked
7.95 Units Returned
Back Naomi Osaka -4.5 games at [2.10] to beat Magda Linette