Tennis Betting Advice - January 2020

Australian Open: Day 6 – Midnight match picks…

Friday 24th January 2020

In your Ones to Watch email today:

  • Play starts Midnight…
  • Day 6…
  • Two match picks…

Good evening and welcome to day six of our Australian Open coverage.

Play starts at Midnight. You can watch live on the Eurosport channels, website or app.

Here come the shocks…

I love tennis. Last night was fantastic entertainment. Full of great play, drama and excitement

Our aggressive approach to the Outright Winner markets relies on getting the favourites beaten.

Shocks and upsets are what we want.

The 2nd Quarter of the women’s draw was blown open last night. With three Australian Open champions and former World No.1’s sent packing…

Tournament favourite Serena Williams was knocked out by 6/1 match underdog Qiang Wang.

Reigning champion Naomi Osaka was dumped out in straight sets by 15-year-old Cori Gauff, who was 4/1 on the night.

And 2018 Aussie Open champion and former World No.1. Caroline Wozniacki brought the curtain down on her career – beaten in three sets by 2/1 shot Ons Jabeur.

The weight of history – and expectation…

Elsewhere, last year’s semi-finalist and one of the new hopes of the men’s game, Stefanos Tsitsipas was swept aside 3-0 by the returning-from-injury Milos Raonic – also a 2/1 match underdog on the day.

And the tournament almost lost Roger Federer, too…

Roger was taken the distance to a deciding fifth-set tiebreak by 12/1 John Millman. The Australian had beaten Fed at the US Open in 2018. He was 14/1 for the upset that time.

But on this occasion, the Swiss legend managed to hang on by his fingernails, clawing that deciding tiebreak back from 4-8 down, to snatch it 10-8.

Federer was near to tears at the end, and looked worn out. In the on-court interview directly afterwards, Roger was only half-joking when he said that during the match, he’d been thinking about how he was going to ‘explain himself’ in the press conference had he lost.

And when the 20-time Grand Slam winner mentioned ‘demons lurking’ – he didn’t sound like he was joking at all.

None of that bodes well for the 38-year-old getting to the final from the bottom half of the men’s draw, especially with Novak Djokovic the most likely semi final opponent, should Federer get there.

Could it be that some of the big names are feeling the pressure, more than they used to? Maybe…

For example, Federer and Serena seem very aware of the Grand Slam records they are consolidating or looking to beat.

While younger players like Tsitsipas and Osaka are now expected to deliver the goods every time they go on stage.

In an intense sporting environment like a Grand Slam, players that are able to stick to the living-in-the-moment mindset may be the ones that prevail.

Coco v Sonya coming up…

With that in mind, this weekend’s 4th round match between teenager Cori ‘Coco’ Gauff and 21-year-old Sofia ‘Sonya’ Kenin will be a fascinating one…

The American pair were two of the six women’s players named on our pre-season Ones to Watch in 2020 list. In this tournament, we’re on Kenin as a 50/1 pick.

As the last match on court in the women’s draw on Thursday, it was good to see Sofia holding it together and fighting hard to get past a tough opponent, winning through against Shuai Zhang, 7-5, 7-6. That victory sets up a 4th round encounter with headline-maker Gauff.

And it was especially pleasing to see Sonya smiling on court after clinching victory. She’s all business during matches – fully focused on trying to win. But the release after match point was nice to see.

Sofia’s enjoying the achievement for what it is – equalling her best ever showing at a Grand Slam. And her first 4th round at a hard-court Slam, with the blue courts being Kenin’s best playing surface.

Price reactions…

With Serena and Osaka going out, the women’s Outright markets were bound to get some big readjustment.

The bookies now make Gauff 12/1 and 14/1 for the title (from 50/1 yesterday). We saw a similar dramatic price drop at Wimbledon last summer. The hype machine is strong with this one – which is no surprise considering this is a 15-year-old competing with and beating household names.

Kenin is now a top price 20/1.

The bookies are well aware of the ‘Coco factor’ attracting money in the main, Outright Winner market. Gauff is ahead of Kenin in the tournament winner betting. But in two other markets, it’s the less-well-known American that is priced as the favourite…

In the initial Match Winner odds, Kenin has been made the favourite to beat Gauff, at 8/11 (1.73).

And in the 2nd Quarter Winner market, Kenin is the new favourite, at 2/1 (3.00) at best. Gauff is 5/2 (3.50) in general and a top price of 11/4 (3.75).

In other words – the teenager’s profile is attracting money in the Outright Winner market. But the bookies make Kenin the more likely to get past Gauff and take that quarter final spot. Interesting stuff.

Day 6 flag-bearers…

Going into the Friday night & Saturday morning matches, we have five other picks flying the Ones to Watch flag at big odds, and looking to join Kenin in the 4th round.


  • Andrey Rublev – top advised price 66/1
  • Dominic Thiem – top advised price 22/1

Rublev is priced as a 4/7 (1.57) favourite to beat David Goffin. The Russian has won 10 matches in a row. The head-to-head over Goffin is 1-0, with Rublev beating the Belgian 3-0 at the US Open in 2017.

Thiem is also a favourite in the Match Winner betting, at 2/5 (1.40) to get past Taylor Fritz. Thiem is ranked No.5 in the world, Fritz is No.34. The head-to-head is 2-1 to our Austrian pick. They’ve met twice at Grand Slam level, both times at the US Open, with Thiem winning 3-1 on each occasion.


  • Belinda Bencic – top advised price 50/1
  • Anett Kontaveit – top advised price 125/1
  • Iga Swiatek – top advised price 150/1

Bencic and Kontaveit play each other in the 3rd round, so we’re guaranteed one of those two through to the Last 16. The bookies make the higher-ranked Bencic the market leader, at 8/11 (1.73), with the Estonian at 6/5 (2.20). This will be their first meeting. Expect a few tense moments and breaks of serve in this one.

Swiatek is on the other side of the odds against the more experienced Donna Vekic. Our 18-year-old is a 6/5 (2.20) slight underdog. They’ve never played each other before. Our Polish contender has the power to push Vekic around here – if she can keep the ball between the lines. This one could be close.

Midnight match picks…

I’ve got two match selections for tonight. Karolina Pliskova and Angelique Kerber both look good favourites to me – and I’m surprised they’re not a bit shorter in the betting.

With that being my opinion, I’m moving in with a Match Winner double, as well as both to win by the 2-0 Set Betting score.

Both matches are on at Midnight, on the two main stadium courts…

Karolina Pliskova to beat Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova

  • Match Winner odds: 1/3 (1.33)
  • Set Betting 2-0 odds: 5/6 (1.83)

Pliskova owns this head-to-head. The big-serving Czech has a 6-0 career record v Pavlyuchenkova.

In tour-level hard-court meetings, Karolina has beaten the Russian 2-0 on four out of four occasions. With match score-lines of: 6-2, 6-4 (US Open), and 6-3, 6-3 on the WTA Tour along with 6-3, 6-0 and 6-2, 6-4 outcomes.

Granted, World No.30 Pavlyuchenkova has reached the quarter finals on two of her last three visits to Melbourne. But World No.2 Pliskova has done even better – with back-to-back quarter finals at the Australian Open before making the semi finals last year.

Angelique Kerber to beat Camila Giorgi

  • Match Winner odds: 8/13 (1.62)
  • Set Betting 2-0 odds: 6/4 (2.50)

Kerber won this event in 2016. The German left-hander hasn’t been playing at that Grand Slam title-winning level for some time, but she’s got past this 3rd round stage on each of her last three appearances at Melbourne Park.

Kerber has started well this week, winning 2-0 in both the 1st & 2nd rounds. And with a new coach in place for the 32-year-old this season, a resurgence of sorts could yet be on the cards in 2020.

What’s more, the match-up with Giorgi is a good one for Angie. The Italian only knows one way to play: all-out attack. Kerber is one of the best at soaking up pressure like that, and turning those points in her favour.

The head-to-head backs that assessment up. It’s 4-0 to Kerber, with three of those meetings settled in straight sets, 2-0.

Ones to Watch:

Match picks

DOUBLE – Match Winner:

  • Karolina Pliskova & Angelique Kerber to win is 23/20 (2.15) with Betway, Evens+ (2.00+) Bet365, William Hill, BetVictor, Boylesports, NetBet, 10Bet

DOUBLE – Set Betting:

  • Pliskova & Kerber to win 2-0 is 7/2 (4.50) with William Hill, Ladbrokes, Coral, 888 Sport, Unibet, 10/3 (4.33) Bet365, Skybet, Sportingbet, NetBet, 10Bet

I’ll be back tomorrow with your day seven email.

If you have any questions or want to drop me a line during the tournament, I’m on hand via email. You can message me at:

Enjoy the tennis…

Best wishes,

Oliver Upstone

Tom Wilson

Ones to Watch