Vekic played very well yesterday is beating Cirstea in straight sets. She leads the head to head 1-0 having won in three sets the only time they met. Pliskova holds around 10% more than Vekic and Vekic breaks her opponents serve around 7% more than Pliskova who can fall apart quite badly if her serve comes under threat.
GOLUBIC TO BEAT SIEGMUND @ 4-5 (NAP)
Golubic is a class above Siegmund on indoor hard courts, holding her serve 10% more and breaking her opponent on average 5% more. Siegmund has a record of 17-18 on indoor hard courts compared to Golubic's 45-22 win-loss record on indoor hard courts. Head to heads is tied 1-1 with Golubic winning the only time they met on hard losing just 5 games. Siegmund reached the FS at Charleston but that was on the green clay and looking at her record this season she has only won one match on hard courts beating Espinosa in a third set tie-break back in Feb. Golubic has not been in much better form winning just two but back on indoor hard courts her favourite conditions and Siegmund's least favourite then Golubic is a confident selection for me.
ROYG TO BEAT LARSSON @ 7-4
Both at home on clay, Royg 10-4 last 12 months and Larsson 12-8. Royg holds serve 3% more and breaks her opponents serve 2% more and is the slightly better play on clay courts. She came through a tough match yesterday and should be playing with plenty of confidence.
JAKUPOVIC TO BEAT SCHIAVONE @ 11-8
Jakupovic leads the head to head 1-0 she won in straight sets earlier this season. 37-12 win-loss record on clay over the last 12 months compared to Schiavone's 3-5 record. She looks a fantastic price to beat a declining Schiavone
DODIN TO BEAT HSIEH @ 8-11 Ladbrokes Hsieh has a 6-15 record on indoor hard courts, Dodin is very accomplished and has a win-loss career record of 62-37 VEKIC TO BEAT CIRSTEA @ 11-10 Vekic is a player who is slowly coming back into form after a woeful couple of years. her win-loss ration on indoor hard courts over last 12 months is 12-7. Cirstea is an all out attacking player, who can beat anyone and also lose to anyone but she does tend to play well in batches and at the minute she looks a little low on confidence which is a very bad sign for her. VONDROUSOVA TO BEAT CORNET @ 13-10 Vondrousova has been in blistering form of late winning her 3 matches here so far and also playing 5 tournaments on the ITF circuit this year, reaching the final in three of them the SF and QF. Cornet has been in poor form and her career record on indoor hard courts is a poor 46-52 record. PARMENTIER V SASNOVICH OVER 21.5 GAMES @ 4-5 Sasnovich leads the head to head 2-1 average of 21 games played per match but that distorted by their first meeting 4 years ago which Sasnovich won 6-2 6-3, both recent meetings finished 7-6, 6-4 so would have covered handicap. WTA BOGOTA Looks like there could be a few close long matches there and these are the markets I am concentrating on combining them for a trixie MAIA V ROYG OVER 21.5 GAMES @ 4-5 ERRANI V ALEXANDROVA OVER 21.5 GAMES @ EVENS SAKKARI V ESPINOSA OVER 21.5 GAMES @ 11-10
Radwanska leads the head to head 2-1, Baroni won their last encounter losing just 5 games in the process and that is what she is capable of. She has the power to blow Radwanska off the court and is the sort of player that Randwanska can struggle with as despite all her skill and variation simply put Baroni can hit through her.
FLIPKENS TO BEAT CIBULKOVA @ 10-3
Cibulkova leads the head to head 4-2, both players have looked in decent form of late, Flipkens net play and variation including her slice could frustrate Cibulkova into making errors tonight. Cibulkova is always vulnerable on serve and I am more than happy to take a chance on Flipkens coming through.
MATTEK SANDS TO BEAT PAVLYUCHENKOVA @ 12-5
Mattek Sands fit and 100% is a huge price here, Pavlyuchenkova's struggles against her style of play. Mattek Sand's aggressive return game puts Pavlyuchenkova's serve under pressure and it is never the most reliable as it is.
Osaka has a 8-2 win record over her last 10 matches and looks in good form as well as playing with a lot of confidence. Halep has been poor this year and has struggled, she is 4-6 win-loss record and against a confident opponent who has an excellent serve then she may struggle again today with her own issues on serve still very much causing issues.
Simply put, Bouchard is the better player. If she plays as well as she can then this price is going to look huge
GOERGES TO BEAT RISKE @ EVENS
Goerges could have too much power for Riske here, Riske is consistent but lacks power in her shots and Goerges can blow most people away but is hugely erratic.
ROYG TO BEAT DOI @ 6-4
Royg has not let me down so far this week coming through both times I have backed her as the underdog and her confidence will be high.
MATTEK SANDS TO BEAT SINIAKOVA @ 9-5
Mattek Sands can upset Siniakova with her variation, especially her net play. Siniakova is a player who can get very upset with herself and Mattek Sands variation will make it difficult for Siniakova to find the rhythm tonight.
TOMLJANOVIC TO BEAT BELLIS @ 12-5
Tomljanovic has fitness issues but when she fit and firing her groundstrokes are very powerful, Bellis excellent young player but not the finished article and I fancy a fit Tom to come through.
Royg to beat Falconi @ 6-4 Royg had a good win yesterday and I she has the better all round game against a rater one dimensional Falconi Potapova to beat Cepelova @ 13-10 Popatova young Russian who you will hear good things about in the future against Cepelova who has always been better on a clay court Nara to beat Schiavone @ 11-10 Schiavone is going downhill, she is always vulnerable on hard courts and I expect her to struggle against the consistent if unspectacular Nara Gibert to beat Bondarenko @ 5-1 Bondarenko is becoming very unpredictable and her usually good serve has been letting her down of late. Gibert has a career record of 24 wins 10 losses on hard court and is great value here to cause an upset Also, having a multiple bet, below: Golubic @ 5-6 Vikhlyantseva @ 4-6 Gibbs @ 5-6 Errani @ 3-1
WOZNIACKI - 4.5 GAMES TO BEAT MALDENOVIC @ 21-20 B WIN Wozniacki leads the head to head 3-0 on hard courts and she has covered this handicap in all of those matches, winning by 5, 7 and 8 games. Wozniacki holds 4% more than her opponent and breaks serve 8% more so I cannot see her losing the match and history suggests she will cover the handicap as Mladenovic relies heavily on her serve and Wozniacki has a terrific return game. PLISKOVA V KUZNETSOVA OVER 22.5 GAMES @ EVENS. B WIN Head to head is tied 1-1 and both matches went three sets. One featured 27 games and the other 30 games. Pliskova holds 7% more than Kuznetsova but the Russian breaks her opponent on average 5% more so it is very even and both in good form playing well I can see another long match.
Virtually every week there’s a WTA tournament taking place somewhere around the world. It doesn’t take a degree to work out the draw of whichever championship it may be and we just sit back and watch our favourite female players battling it out. Where it gets complicated is when team tournaments take place, because understanding the Fed Cup and why it doesn’t have the impact it should is all a bit baffling.
The series certainly isn't as star-studded as it should be. Imagine the betting opportunities if, over a week or two, the Fed Cup was held with many of the top female players in the world taking part. It’d be a fantastic tournament, not only highlighting the best of women’s tennis but also embodying that team element that is rarely seen in the sport. The official Fed Cup describes itself as ‘the World Cup of tennis.’ At present, though, the Federation Cup is a right old mess. It takes place throughout the year, and we have to work out whether our country is in the World Group I, World Group II or Europe/Africa Group III. It is rather humorous that a long-winded tournament like this actually had its name shortened from the Federation Cup; shortening the actual tournament would be a much more logical idea. There has been talk of changing the format of the Fed Cup, but little seems to be happening at present. It says a lot that the USA have won the cup a record 17 times. With players such as the Williams sisters, that’s no surprise, is it? Well, actually it is – because the USA haven’t won the Fed Cup since 2000; it last made the final in 2010 and the Williams sisters were nowhere to be seen. Indeed, the current rankings have the USA down in seventh – with the Czech Republic in first – so what on earth is going on here? This year’s tournament began in February, the World Group semi-finals are in April and then there’s a seven-month wait until the final. If you fancy a flutter, tennis betting has Serena Williams at 2/1 to win the French Open, but she won't be tasting any Fed Cup glory this year.
In April, the Czech Republic take on the USA, but it’s the likes of Alison Riske, Coco Vandeweghe, Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Shelby Rogers who got the Americans through to the last four by beating Germany. Oh, and there was no sign of Angelique Kerber in the German side. The USA will be playing the tie on clay in a bid to upset the Czechs, and the match that could have seen Serena Williams v Karolina Pliskova but won't will be played in front of just 4,000 people.
With all the playoff rounds, it’s no wonder that this tournament fails to get fans excited. Instead, why can’t organisers just seed the top teams and let the others then go through a qualifying section? That way, we'd get a one or two-week tournament that would fit into the schedule and the top players would be able to compete in a bonafide World Cup of tennis. After all, what do you want in a USA v Germany match? Riske v Petkovic or the top two players in the world, Serena Williams and Angelique Kerber, facing off? It’s a no-brainer, isn’t it? Both Serena and Venus have had success representing the USA in the Summer Olympics. That shows a willingness to compete for their country, so before they retire, it's time to revamp the Fed Cup and give us a tournament that, alongside the Davis Cup, can make tennis proud. Photographs: Karolina Pliskova" (CC BY-SA 2.0) by Kulitat