It’s championship final day at the Generali Ladies Linz in Austria, with play starting at around 1.15pm UK time.
Saturday’s wager on Ana Ivanovic to beat Stefanie Voegele in straight sets proved to be profitable, as the Serb edged both sets against the Swiss, while Carla Suarez Navarro threw in one of her regular shockers to be crushed by Angelique Kerber.
Ana Ivanovic vs Angelique Kerber
This fifth meeting between the Serb and the German may just have a little bit of needle on it due to the last second wild card handed to Kerber, who then was given Ivanovic’s spot at the bottom of the draw.
Ivanovic has a fine record here in Linz and indeed she is the player with the most match wins at this tournament, with 20 and just three defeats, but it’s Kerber who comes into this match as a 1.57 favourite.
The German’s only win over the Serb came a matter of weeks ago in Tokyo in the third round there where conditions are quick, but she has been beaten three times in the past by today’s opponent, although two of those were on clay.
Kerber’s main goal in taking the late wild card was quite clearly to qualify for the year-end championships in Istanbul, which she has now achieved and she is probably playing some of her best tennis of the year in its closing stages.
Angelique barely had to move out of second gear to beat an out of sorts Suarez Navarro, who seems to be a player who is either very good or awful, with not a lot in the middle. She was certainly the latter on Saturday, so Kerber will have a fair bit left in the tank after just 51 minutes on court yesterday.
Ivanovic was made to work harder in her first meeting with Voegele yesterday, but she still hasn’t dropped a set here this week and she clearly loves this tournament.
Ana has a pretty good record in tour level finals of 11 wins and four losses and she’s won seven of her last eight stretching back to 2008, but this is her first final since 2011.
Kerber has been contesting some decent prizes in recent times, but she still only has two titles to her name at tour level from seven finals and she has lost her last four in a row.
The Austrian crowd are due a decent final here in Linz, as the last seven have all been straight sets and not beenoverly competitive, with Nadezda Petrova’s win over Patty Schnyder in 2005 being the last to go three sets.
The 1.57 on Kerber looks skinny to me and I expect Ana to make more of a match of this than in Tokyo, but I fancy Kerber to edge this one. The 2-1 Kerber win at 3.75 looks the wager here.
Back Kerber to beat Ivanovic 2-1 at 3.75
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