Tennis Betting Advice - January 2023

Australian Open: Day 11 - the early bird gets the worm...

Wednesday 25th January 2023

Good afternoon and welcome to Day 11 of your Australian Open 2023 daily service. The women’s Semi Finals start from 8.30am Thursday, UK time…

Under pressure…

Following on from the point we made yesterday about mental toughness, the old demons did indeed return for Karolina Pliskova last night. The Czech went out pretty tamely, despite going into her match against quarter-final debutant Magda Linette as a heavy favourite. Linette won 2-0.

In the night’s other women’s quarter final, Aryna Sabalenka certainly looked the most nervous I’ve seen her all fortnight. But she held her dominant, attacking game together plenty well enough to see off a somewhat disappointing Donna Vekic in straight sets. Both women hit a fair few double faults.

We thought those matches might get nervy and scrappy - and they did. No payout though, and the Aussie Open 2023 isn’t going into the book as a Grand Slam classic for my Ones to Watch picks.

Of course, we can’t land a Major winner at massive underdog odds every time. The goal is to make this approach pay over the course of seasons and years…

So I said to my wife…

I spent some time yesterday evening researching a couple of big-price early-bird angles for this summer’s trip to Wimbledon

When I told my wife what I was doing, she exclaimed something along the lines of ‘Blimey, Wimbledon already?’...

The early bird gets the worm, I informed her. The early bird gets the worm!

Perhaps sensing a slightly manic level of enthusiasm behind my currently sleep-deprived eyes, my wife went off about her business, leaving me to my computer.

It’s true, though. The early bird does get the worm. Last April, we got on Ons Jabeur for Wimbledon 2022 at odds of 40/1 & 33/1. Come day one of the tournament in June, Jabeur went off as one of the favourites, at 12/1 & 10/1. She finished runner-up for an Each Way place payout.

  • I made some good SW19 notes last night, and have got two lines of inquiry in particular that I’m planning to follow-up on very soon. I’ll keep you posted, and I anticipate we’ll soon be having at least one early-bird bet for Wimbledon 2023

This is why we go for big prices…

The Australian Open semi finals are coming up over the next two days, and both the top 2 seeds in the men’s & women’s events are long gone. With a couple of big-odds surprise packages in the Outright Winner betting:

Women’s Semi Finals:

  • Elena Rybakina v Victoria Azarenka
  • Magda Linette v Aryna Sabalenka

Day 1 prices in the tournament outright market:

Sabalenka 7/1
Rybakina 22/1
Azarenka 50/1
Linette 300/1+

Men’s Semi Finals:

  • Karen Khachanov v Stefanos Tsitsipas
  • Novak Djokovic v Tommy Paul

Day 1 prices:

Djokovic 5/6
Tsitsipas 14/1
Khachanov 150/1+
Paul 150/1+

Three of those eight semi-finalists went off at well over 100/1. We weren’t on the ‘right’ long-range outsiders this time. But going back to the early-bird point, several of those names have featured in Ones to Watch as youngsters over the past few campaigns…

Khachanov was in our pre-season 2017 report, when he was 20 years old and ranked outside of the world’s top 50…

Tsitsipas and Sabalenka were both on our 2019 list as 20-year-olds…

Rybakina featured in my 2021 report, age 21. And that’s one player I do kick myself over a bit, as it turns out Elena struggled in that post-lockdown 2021 season… only to power to 100/1 Wimbledon glory in 2022 (!).

The point being. The early bird really does catch the worm. And we’ll be looking to catch plenty more of them in the weeks, months, and years ahead. I will be putting together a new Ones to Watch in 2023 list in February, before we head to the two big tournaments at Indian Wells and Miami in March. Watch this space!

Day 11 - Women’s Semi Finals…

Back to Melbourne now…

The women’s semi finals take place from 8.30am tomorrow.

The head-to-head says that Rybakina won her only previous meeting with Azarenka, by two sets to nil. And that Sabalenka holds a 2-0 record v Linette, winning both encounters in straight sets. But none of those were Grand Slam semi finals…

On the stats front:

  • Rybakina is top of the Most Aces leaderboard in the women’s tournament. And has also registered the joint-fastest serve this fortnight
  • Despite a much-improved showing on last season, Sabalenka is 3rd in the tournament for Most Double Faults (and no.1 out of players left in the competition)
  • Azarenka is ranked no.1 for First Serve Return Points Won. Which means her clash with favourite Rybakina is the best server in the women’s Aussie Open 2023, against the best returner. Azarenka is also top for Break Points Won
  • Linette is a respectable joint-2nd for Second Serve Points Won, which I reckon franks what we saw against Pliskova last night, in that once the ball is in play, Linette knows how to stay in a rally

Out of that little lot, two potential scenarios for underdog backers would be:

Sabalenka gets the jitters, and dumps a load of double faults and unforced errors against the hard-working Linette…

Azarenka manages to absorb the power of Rybakina, and work her way into contention on the scoreboard…

Call me bloody-minded, but with the prices in mind, I’m going again with my angle from yesterday - and that’s to back the favourites to get the job done, but only after a scare or wobble. With Rybakina 2-1 and Sabalenka 2-1 my Set Betting picks. Sabalenka has been in three Grand Slam semi finals before - and all of them went to three sets…


Ones to Watch picks:

Australian Open 2023 – Women’s Semi Finals

Set Betting:

  • Elena Rybakina to win 2-1 v Victoria Azarenka @ 16/5 (4.2) Boylesports, 3/1 (4.0) William Hill, Ladbrokes, Coral, Sporting Index Fixed Odds
  • Aryna Sabalenka to win 2-1 v Magda Linette @ 17/5 (4.4) William Hill, 16/5 (4.2) Boylesports, 3/1 (4.0) Ladbrokes, Coral, Sporting Index Fixed Odds
  • Double: Rybakina 2-1 & Sabalenka 2-1 - best odds @ 16.6/1 (17.6) Boylesports, William Hill


I’ll be back at 5pm Thursday with your Day 12 email.

You can email me during the tournament at:

Enjoy the tennis…

Best wishes,

Tom Wilson

Tom Wilson

Ones to Watch