After picking up another winner on Sunday, Dan Weston returns with his thoughts Monday's WTA matches in the fourth round of the US Open...
"Goerges leads the head to head series 3-0 but it's one of those head to heads that probably doesn't have that much relevance to the upcoming match-up."
Under-rated Wang knocks out Barty
I mentioned several times previously that I felt Qiang Wang was under-rated by the market and she was our recommendation yesterday. We had her getting a 5.5 game head start in her meeting with Ashleigh Barty, but Wang didn't just cover the game handicap - she won in straight sets. Wang now faces Serena Williams tomorrow in the quarter-finals.
Goerges head to head lead looking irrelevant
Value is thin on the ground today with the first match between Donna Vekic and Julia Goerges looking the best spot, although it is extremely marginal with Vekic the [1.93] slight favourite.
Goerges leads the head to head series 3-0 but it's one of those head to heads that probably doesn't have that much relevance to the upcoming match-up. Vekic was ranked outside the top 50 in the first two matches, and all were on either grass or indoor - quick conditions which suit Goerges more. The medium/medium-slow paced hard courts here in New York are likely to be less to the German's taste.
My model went [1.77] Vekic, with the Croatian 23 year old having around a 2% hold/break edge over Goerges on hard court this season, and ideally I'd want around the [1.95] mark before recommending Vekic as a formal recommendation today - a few ticks bigger than current market lines. If there's not enough value, I won't recommend something, and with this being a pretty marginal spot, we don't have a pick today on the women's side.
Osaka needing to turn around season's results against Bencic
This is because the market looks pretty accurate on the other three matches, with all three featuring sub [1.50] priced favourites.
Naomi Osaka against Belinda Bencic looks the most competitive, with the world number one a [1.46] favourite against Bencic, who has improved this season but still looks a little short of Osaka's level based on surface stats.
Interestingly, Bencic has won two of their three previous meetings, including twice this year, as well as an easy 6-3 6-1 win over Osaka at Indian Wells, in pretty similar conditions. Osaka was around the [1.55] mark that day. Another point worth making is that both players retired in their previous tournament in Cincinnati.
Mertens likely to end Ahn's journey
Elise Mertens is priced at [1.32] to get past Kristie Ahn in the third match on today's card, and just getting to this stage has been a real triumph for the 27 year old wild card Ahn, who has never broken the top 100 previously.
Given that history, it's no surprise that Ahn is a pretty heavy underdog to Mertens here, who has been a pretty solid competitor on the main tour over the last couple of years. Mertens is running at just over 108% combined hold/break this season on hard court, and it would be a surprise if Ahn could get past that average level today. Ahn hasn't dropped a set in the tournament so far, so something has to give.
Andreescu with big advantage over Townsend
Finally, in the night match, our Q2 outright pick, Bianca Andreescu is a strong [1.28] favourite to end the run of Taylor Townsend. Andreescu has hard court data which puts her as a real title contender here and while Townsend has done well in the past week, it would be a real surprise if the American qualifier got past arguably the most talented young player on the WTA Tour.
Andreescu has almost a 20% hold/break advantage over Townsend on hard court in the last 12 months and I'd be very disappointed if Andreescu didn't continue her march towards winning her quarter of the draw tonight.
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Dan's US Open P&L:-
13 Units Staked
18.07 Units Returned