It was a very profitable week of WTA betting at Indian Wells last week and the tour moves swiftly on to the east coast for the Sony Open Premier event in Miami.
Conditions in Key Biscayne are always on the slow side for an outdoor hard court event and today sees the beginning of the first round, along with the remaining qualifying matches.
Of the 32 first round matches here 12 months ago there were nine wins for the outsiders and 23 for the favourites. Today's opening round line-up features Heather Watson, Flavia Pennetta, Andrea Petkovic, Shuai Peng and Kristina Mladenovic.
Watson is the slight outsider against the erratic Ayumi Morita in a repeat of their match here two years ago that Morita won. This year's clash is very tough to call, with Watson not in the best of form and Morita always unpredictable.
Pennetta is continuing her comeback from a long term wrist injury and takes on Johanna Larsson today, while Petkovic is in the same boat after her ankle problems and knee surgery and the German faces an intriguing clash with Bojana Jovanovski today.
I fancy Peng to take down Sofia Arvidsson in their clash this evening, but I don't trust the Chinese player's perennially injured right shoulder, so I prefer backing Marina Erakovic to beat Irina-Camelia Begu in their clash on Court 2 at around 5.30pm UK time.
It will be the first meeting between the pair, but on current form I have to give a significant edge to Memphis winner Erakovic, who can be forgiven last week's first round loss to Shahar Peer in Indian Wells, with Peer looking like she's finding a bit of form after a long spell in the doldrums.
The Kiwi has had a much more solid year than Begu, who's been suffering from a shoulder problem and has retired twice already this year. The Romanian's win over Watson in Indian Wells was more down to a poor performance on the day from the Brit and Erakovic should be winning this one.
Best Bet: Back Erakovic to beat Begu at 1.60
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