WTA Miami Masters Betting: Serena won't overcome Na Li handicap


It was back to the payout counter yesterday after my WTA bet of the day was a winning one at the 2013 Sony Open.

Sara Errani came back in style from a first set drubbing to defeat Ana Ivanovic in three and move through to the quarter-finals in Key Biscayne.

Elsewhere, Serena Williams had an ongoing battle with herself and Domi Cibulkova, which eventually saw her progress to today’s last eight stage, but it was at times a really poor performance from Williams.

The win sets up an intriguing clash with Na Li that takes place at around 5pm UK time this afternoon and this is one where it looks worth siding with the Chinese player on the handicap.

I’m expecting a better display from Serena today, but she doesn’t look at all focused at the moment and admitted as much in her press conference after the Cibulkova match.

It may be something to do with the added pressure of playing at home in Florida, but after winning here five times in the 2000s she hasn’t lifted this title since 2008 and lost in the quarters to Caroline Wozniacki last year after not playing in Miami for two seasons.

Na Li looked excellent at times against Garbine Muguruza yesterday, but almost blew 5-1 leads in both the first set and first set tie-break, so the issues with her wandering concentration are still there.

The slow conditions here in Miami should help Na, who enjoys a slowish hard court and plays well on clay and she has the class to really test Serena today if she can keep her level up.

The 6-1 head-to-head in favour of Williams is a concern for Na Li backers, but she did take Serena to three in their only meeting here in 2009.

The other quarter final being played today sees Aga Radwanska take on Kirsten Flipkens and I can’t envisage Flipkens having the tools to dismantle the Pole in this one.

They’ve met once before back in 2010 on indoor hard in Fed Cup when Aga won in straight sets and I would imagine that will be the outcome again today.

Best Bets

Back Na Li +4.5 games to beat Williams at 1.96

Back Radwanska to beat Flipkens 2-0 at 1.55

Follow Sean Calvert's tennis betting tips every day