Tennis Betting Advice - August 2020
Sunday Night Club – back in the game at 25/1…
Sunday 2nd August 2020
In your Ones to Watch email today:
Five months later…
Good evening. It’s hard to believe. But it’s been five months, almost to the day, since we were last in action with our ‘Sunday Night Club’…
That was March 1st, when we backed players at 10/1 and 33/1 for the women’s event in Lyon. Since then, we’ve seen everything from eSports & online tournaments, to exhibition matches, and new competitions with experimental scoring systems.
On Monday, albeit largely behind closed doors, the WTA Tour finally resumes. Whether it lasts in the next few weeks remains to be seen. But right now, we have a proper tournament to look forward to.
Ones to Watch in the first week back…
WTA Palermo qualifying has been taking place over the weekend. Play starts in the main draw from 3pm UK time tomorrow. This is a clay court event.
Tonight, you & I are going in with our first Outright Winner picks. This market is where we do our most vital Ones to Watch business. The remit is as follows:
I go for appealing outsiders at attractive Each Way prices. By their very nature, those odds mean we won’t win very often. But at the prices we target, the wins make it all very much worth it when they do come along…
Pre-lockdown, we’d actually started 2020 with a strong flurry of finalists. Finding five of them in January & February, at odds ranging from 10/1 to 50/1.
This evening, we’re getting back in the game…
Looking for the sweet spot…
In this very first tournament back on the tour, I want to be backing players that fall in some kind of sweet spot between being well-rested, and having some match fitness & summer form.
We should be wary of unknown quantities that have played no tennis of any competitive shape whatsoever since March or before. And also tread carefully with those that have been cramming in the appearances at national and regional exhibition events in the last few weeks.
The 1st round match-up in the bottom half of the WTA Palermo draw between Dayana Yastremska and Sara Sorribes Tormo is a good case in point…
On the one hand, we have the higher-ranked Yastremska, still just 20 years old and a Ones to Watch regular. The Ukrainian is a player I expect to do big, big things in tennis. But she’s got nothing on the form-sheet since February. And has been involved with plenty of distractions during lockdown, be that recording a pop song, or getting into controversy on social media.
On the other side of the net, we have Sorribes Tormo, who has just chalked up eight match wins in a row at Spanish clay court events in July. Admittedly, none of those wins were against players of the calibre of Yastremska. But the Spaniard could well spring a surprise with a more tuned-up clay game than the Ukrainian here.
In the Outright Winner market, Yastremska is with the single-figure odds and favourites, at around 8/1. Sorribes Tormo is 33/1.
I’m going for a player from each side of the Palermo draw. One at a ‘best of the rest’ price of 12/1, and the other more in the outsider camp at 25/1…
12/1 and 25/1 shots in Italy…
The top of the WTA Palermo betting is made up of names like Petra Martic (6/1), Marketa Vondrousova (6/1) and Maria Sakkari (8/1). Along with 8/1 Yastremska.
All players I like. All women that we’ve backed in Ones to Watch before – but crucially, at much bigger odds. For example, Vondrousova was our 50/1 & 40/1 underdog choice at the French Open last year, going on to finish runner-up for an Each Way place return.
At slightly bigger prices that those leading ladies in Italy this week, Anett Kontaveit is the one for me at 12/1.
I don’t really know why the Estonian isn’t in with the 7/1-bracket favourites. She’s coming in to this on the back of a couple of decent match wins at exhibition level in July.
Overall, the 24-year-old, world No.22 is a very powerful hitter, with a 68% career match win rate on clay. Nerves sometimes seem to get to Kontaveit, so maybe playing with no crowd here might actually suit her.
A potential 2nd round match against Laura Siegemund could prove significant this week…
The 32-year-old German, priced between 28/1 and 40/1 in the tournament market, has played a lot of tennis in the post-lockdown environment. Between June 16th and July 23rd, Siegemund won 11 straight matches on clay (again, albeit it against lower-level opposition). Before losing on her two most recent outings.
Siegemund is a clay specialist, but the problem is she struggles to stay fit for long periods. Injuries have really hampered her career. I think Kontaveit can get past her here.
In the opposite half of the Palermo draw, the one I like at underdog prices is the up-and-coming Fiona Ferro…
The 23-year-old Frenchwoman has 220 career match wins to her name, and 145 of them have come on clay courts. That includes winning the WTA Lausanne title on clay in Switzerland last July, as a 33/1 shot.
That maiden WTA title win came the week before Palermo last summer. Ferro went on to reach the quarter finals at the Italian event. This week, this improving player could go one or two rounds better…
The signs are there that Ferro is in some form coming into this return to main tour action. The right-hander won 10 matches in a row in July. Including a decent standard of opponent, such as a brace of victories over compatriot and fellow Palermo entrant, Kristina Mladenovic. Ferro could meet Mladenovic in the 2nd round here.
Currently sitting right at the edge of what would be a career-best breakthrough into the Top 50 in the WTA world rankings, Fiona ended 2017 ranked no.325 in the world. Since then, she has improved her position each season. Finishing 2018 at no.102, then ending last year at no.63.
With so many question marks to consider in this first week back, this draw could well open up for a 25/1 outsider like Ferro to show what she can do.
Ones to Watch:
Outright Winner picks – Each Way
Each Way terms: 1/2 odds 1-2 places.
Note: the bookies I’ve mentioned there have a ‘non-runner no bet’ policy for Outright Winner bets. Find out more here. That’s a rule worth looking out for this week, as with the coronavirus situation and players being tested regularly in Palermo, you never know if someone will have to pull out.
WTA Palermo will be shown live on Amazon Prime Video every day this week.
Play starts at 3pm Monday (bookies suspend their Outright Winner markets during play).
I’ll be in touch with any match picks for us as the early rounds unfold, as well as updates on the Outright market.
Enjoy the tennis…