WTA Tennis Betting: Petkovic looking the best of the outsiders

The remaining 16 matches are in play at the 2014 WTA Sony Open on Friday, with the likes of Simona Halep, Venus Williams and Jelena Jankovic all in action today.

Things certainly did not go my way on Thursday at Crandon Park, with both of the players that I backed producing poor performances and mustering just eight games between them.

Sorana Cirstea was unable to serve at even 50 percent of first deliveries in play and was comfortably beaten by Tsvetana Pironkova, while poor old Lauren Davis had a shocker and was thrashed by Ana Ivanovic.

Cirstea seems to have talked her way out of doing well in Miami, despite yesterday facing an opponent with a much poorer record than her own, while Davis was very much below par and Ivanovic played well, resulting in a bad loss there.

But there are another group of favourites who look to be worth taking on today and they include Eugenie Bouchard, Caroline Wozniacki, Sloane Stephens, Alizé Cornet and Roberta Vinci, who all may struggle at Key Biscayne on Friday.


Roberta Vinci 1.68 vs Barbora Zahlavova Strycova 2.12 - 15.05 GMT

This 15.00 UK time encounter on Court 8 will be the fifth meeting between the Italian and the Czech and although Vinci leads the head-to-head 4-0 this seems like the time for BZS to strike back in this series.

All four of their prior matches were close run affairs, with two of the three tour level matches ending in deciding set tie breaks and none of the eight sets they’ve contested at tour level have ended in fewer than 10 games.

Indeed, three of them have been tie breaks and Vinci’s drop in level this season could certainly tip the balance in Zahlavova Strycova’s favour here.

Vinci has won just one of her eight matches in 2014 and is seemingly on the decline at the age of 31, so Zahlavova Strycova with a win under her belt here already looks a decent wager as underdog at 2.12.

The overs looks a distinct possibility here too at 21.5 total games, while the over 9.5 games in the first set at 2.20 looks very good as well if their historically tough battles continue here.


Elina Svitolina 2.80 vs Eugenie Bouchard 1.40 - 16.05 GMT

This one looks like it has the makings of a career series that could run for a very long time, with both of these young players appearing to have bright futures in the game.

Just seven months apart in age they’ve already met twice – once in Fed Cup on the clay and once on slow outdoor hard at Indian Wells – and Svitolina came out on top on both occasions in three set battles.

Based purely on that the Ukrainian prospect looks decent as a 2.80 underdog, with Bouchard’s higher profile and eye-catching run to the latter stages of the Australian Open making her shorter in the betting than perhaps she deserves to be here.

Svitolina landed a nice winner for us on day one of this event with a success over Bethanie-Mattek Sands and that will have her attuned nicely to conditions here at Crandon Park, while her opponent comes here a little cold in her first match here this year.

Again, the overs looks likely here at 20.5 games, priced at 1.87 and the +3.5 games on Svitolina also looks good at 1.95.

Having come out on top of their two three set battles last year it could well be Bouchard’s turn and the 2-1 to the Canadian at 3.90 is the best of the bigger priced wagers.


Alizé Cornet 1.67 vs Andrea Petkovic 2.15 - 16.05 GMT

This one could also be a tough battle, with the pair renewing rivalries after playing out a tight three setter indoors in Paris at the end of January.

I watched that match and seem to remember several dubious line calls going the way of the French player and there’s a decent chance that Petko could get a little bit of revenge today at a tournament she loves and plays well at.

The German has a 9-3 record here in Key Biscayne, where she was a semi finalist in 2011 and the conditions really suit her, while Cornet’s 4-6 mark here hardly inspires confidence in the favourite.

That recent match in Paris really could have gone either way and I like the 2.15 about Petko today.


Best Bets

Back Zahlavova Strycova to beat Vinci at 2.12

Back over 20.5 games in Svitolina/Bouchard at 1.87

Back Petkovic to beat Cornet at 2.15