We’ve reached the end of the 2013 WTA season and apart from a couple of low grade events, we’re done and dusted for the year with today’s Tournament of Champions final.
There was some classically comedic WTA tennis on show on Saturday in Sofia, where somehow my best bet was successful after Simona Halep won six straight games to take care of Ana Ivanovic in three bizarre sets.
Curious became even more so in the second semi-final when a classic WTA score line of 6-1, 1-6, 6-3 was wheeled out in Sam Stosur’s win over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, despite Stosur leading 6-1, *1-0 in the match.
Simona Halep vs Samantha Stosur
So, we have a repeat of the recent Moscow final on Sunday in Sofia between Halep and Stosur and it could be case of last woman standing in this one.
Halep has never been the most resilient of characters in terms of her fitness until this year and this will be her 71st match of the season. It’s been by far her busiest on tour, so the question is how much does she have left in the tank for today?
Both the Romanian and Ivanovic had the trainer on court on Saturday and this might represent an opportunity to side with Stosur at a decent prize, with the muscular Aussie surely in a better physical state than the petite Halep.
The layers have long since cottoned on to Halep, who’s been winning for fun in the last few months and 1.55 is too short today in these circumstances for my liking.
Halep would have used a lot of physical and emotional energy to claw her way back against Ivanovic yesterday and she has admitted to having a leg injury, which makes me think that backing her at 1.55 against the powerful Stosur may not the best bet in the world.
The tennis match-up rests largely on how effectively Stosur serves and how well Halep can return it. We saw in Moscow that the Romanian can do that very well, which is one of the reasons she’s favourite today.
But at this time of the year it’s not all about serves and returns and the conditioning factor must come into play, which leads me to side with Stosur here with a 3.5 game start on the handicap at 1.73.
Back Stosur +3.5 games to beat Halep at 1.73
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