The final 16 ladies contesting the 2014 Sony Open are in action on Monday in Miami as the fourth round of matches takes place.
Sunday’s first bet, which was on Madison Keys to win a set against Na Li was most unfortunate, as the American served for set one, had three set points and was also three times a break point away from a double break 3-0 lead in the second set, which she went on to lose.
Effectively, that wager lost by a single point, but Carla Suarez Navarro had no such problems in a thoroughly convincing win over Kaia Kanepi to make my second bet of the day successful.
Ana Ivanovic 1.68 vs Petra Kvitova 2.12 - BET and STREAM live on Unibet TV from 19.05
The former French Open champion has been in excellent form so far this week in Key Biscayne, with comprehensive wins over in-form opponents Lauren Davis and Flavia Pennetta for the loss of just nine games.
Ivanovic has been dominating proceedings with her forehand, which is great news for her and she also hasn’t been overly troubled on serve by the windy conditions as yet either.
The Serb has said that her game “is getting back to the level I want” and that could well spell bad news for Kvitova, whose appearance in the last-16 today is her best effort at this tournament on a part of the tour that she has traditionally struggled with.
The Czech has often struggled in hot, humid conditions and perhaps that’s one reason why she had never bettered the last-32 here before this year and on the form we’ve seen from both in Miami this week I would make Ana a decent favourite today. Another reason is the lack of pace in the courts, which makes her winners tougher to come by.
Ivanovic has won four of their six prior encounters, but Petra has been successful in two of the last three and much will depend on which of the two serves the better today.
That aspect of the Kvitova game worked well in a fairly comfortable win over Donna Vekic in round three, but it’s not a reliable weapon and should it desert her on Monday this match will likely go the way of the Serb at 1.68.
Elsewhere on Monday, the other wagers I have on my shortlist are to take a chance on the in-form Domi Cibulkova against Venus Williams, who looked very tired and lethargic in an unimpressive win over Casey Dellaqua on Sunday. She’s a touch short though at around 1.68 and to my mind Ivanovic is the better wager of the two at the same price.
Aga Radwanska could be vulnerable again at less than peak fitness in her first career meet with Elina Svitolina, but I’m not convinced that the young Ukrainian is quite up to the job of getting the better of the Pole today after some tough matches in Miami already this week.
Li again looks vulnerable if she continues to mishit and double fault as often as she has been doing and Suarez Navarro can make her play more balls than she would like and the over 19.5 games at 1.82 or the 2.04 about the Spaniard +1.5 sets are worthy options here.
Maria Sharapova has always been too much of a big hitter for Kirsten Flipkens to cope with and should be again, even allowing for her recent injury, while Serena Williams is likely to deliver a heavy defeat to compatriot Coco Vandeweghe.
She’s 3-19 in sets against top-10 opposition and although she is a big hitter she surely won’t be allowed the time on the ball she needs by an opponent who can hit even harder than her.
All eight favourites won in the fourth round here last year and I’m struggling to find one that has a really good chance again in 2014, so my only wager today will be on Ivanovic.
Back Ivanovic to beat Kvitova at 1.68