What a fun start and a lame finish that was. After starting the day 3-1, Ms Bouchard couldn’t fight through a cold and unfortunately, we bet on Maria Sukkari. Maria has been a huge disappointment this season and will be someone I avoid until further notice. I do hope she gets back to form we saw in San Jose & Seoul last year, but there is no profit in hope. Taking a step and looking at all the matches, it was an odd day. Venus Williams called for an MTO before serving to win set 1, managed to serve out to win and then looked like she couldn’t hold a raquet over her head while getting bageled in the second. Naturally, she won 5 of the first 6 games in the 3rd set and won the match 6-4 0-6 6-3. Nothing else really noteworthy, so let’s jump into day 3.
Yesterday 3-3 -.5 units
This tournament 4-7 -3.6 units
Since I started doing these write-ups 4-7 -3.6 units
All of these lines come from a local book that I use. I will say this often, BE SURE TO CHECK THE PRICES AT ALL THE BOOKS YOU CAN ACCESS. One of the easiest ways to be a better bettor is get the best prices. I’m sure anything I post in here is offered at a better number somewhere, so be smart and check all your outs before placing your wager. The first number after each player’s name is their US odds with decimal odds in parenthesis. I’ll list total games for every match and spreads for matches with a spread greater than 2.5 games. Anything less than that and just take the moneyline, no need to risk a bagel or breadstick ruining your favorite spread.
As for staking, 1 unit = 1% of my bankroll. Do what you’d like, but I think is the best plan for the long term. Almost all bets will be 1 unit, sometimes less and rarely more. If it’s a favorite then the bet is to win the number of units posted. For example, 1 unit on a -130 (1,77) is a 1.3 unit bet to win 1 unit. If it’s an underdog, then the bet is to risk the units posted. For example, 1 unit on +200 (3,00) is 1 unit to win 2 units. Feel free to DM @_Noops with any questions.
Kiki Bertens -575 (1,17) vs Magda Linette +425 (5,25) Total Games 19.5 Spread -/+ 5 games
Well there she is, my kryptonite, Kiki Bertens. If history is any predictor of the future then you should likely bet the opposite of whatever comes next. This price looks right to me. Kiki Bertens has only made the 3rd round once in her five appearances in Indian Wells, but she is the far superior player. There are no relevant head to head matches to consider. Linette is the inferior player and also has had no success here. Pass.
Johanna Konta -125 (1,80) vs Su Wei Hsieh -105 (1,95) Total Games 21.5
This will be a fun match to watch. If you’ve never seen Hsieh she is a sight to behold. She is one of, if not the most, crafty player on tour. Not much power at all, but endless movement and great accuracy. She will find what her opponent can’t do and take advantage of it over and over again. Indian Wells are outdoor courts that can be windy which plays to her advantage. Konta is a very good player and if this were indoors or maybe on grass I’d consider her, but I can’t go against Hsieh here. Pass.
Garbiñe Muguruza -455 (1,17) vs Lauren Davis +355 (4,55) Total Games 19.5 Spread -/+ 5 games
Betting Muguruza matches is not for the faint of heart. When she’s motivated and in form she is one of the very best players in the world. Good luck having any idea when that will be. She should beat Lauren Davis without any problem, but at that price there is absolutely no value. Pass
Victoria Azarenka +170 (2,70) vs Serena Williams -210 (1,47) Total Games 21 Spread +/- 3.5 games
Noted mother, Serena Williams, makes her first appearance since her collapse at the Australian Open. At first glance this is a very cheap price on the tournament favorite. The last time these 2 played was at this very tournament and in the final in 2016. Azarenka was the victor that day and in 2 sets, 4 & 4. I imagine that and Serena’s long layoff are driving such a cheap price. I just can’t do it. I need to see Serena play a match or two before I get involved. Pass.
Elise Mertens -115 (1,87) vs Amanda Anisimova -115 (1,87) Total Games 21.5
This is another great match. Mertens and Anisimova are both younger players coming up through the ranks and showing us a higher and higher levels of play. Mertens was incredible in her run to win Doha, but I think this matchup is a problem for her. Mertens struggles with players who hit with a lot of power. Anisimova should be able hit through her movement. My only concern is the slow courts we have this week. That plays in Mertens strengths and leads me to believe this is priced properly. Pass.
Beranda Pera +225 (3,25) vs Qiang Wang -275 (1,36) Total Games 20 Spread +/- 4.5 games
Qiang Wang is the much better player in this match. The moneyline looks correct, but 4.5 games is a little cheap. Wang played well on these same courts last week. She’s had plenty of time to rest and should have no problem here. I hate laying a spread greater than 4, so just half a unit on Wang -4.5 games.
Dominika Cibulkova +150 (2,50) vs Bianca Andreescu -180 (1,56) Total Games 21 Spread +/- 3 games
I was shocked when I saw this price, downright flabbergasted. Cibulkova has been top 50 player for years. She has the pedigree and the name recognition to easily be the favorite over a younger player like Andreescu. This price speaks volumes about how much the market respects the young Canadian. She is one of the many young, talented players that we’ll see great things from in the future. I’m going to trust that the market knows best and pass.
Stefanie Voegele +300 (4,00) vs Sloane Stephens -380 (1,26) Total Games 20 Spread +/- 5 games
Remember what I said about Muguruza? That most applies to Sloan Stephens as well. She is in her home country which usually bodes well for her level on interest. I was shocked to see the head to head. Most matches are too old to consider, but Voegele is 4-1 lifetime and beat Stephens in Acapulco last week. As I mentioned in my preview this is a great week for overs and large spreads so let’s do it. Half a unit on over 20 games and half a game on +5 games.
Elina Svitolina -270 (1,37) vs Sofia Kenin (+220) Total Games 20 Spread -/+ 4.5 games
This price on the moneyline and the spread look correct. Svitolina is the better player and Kenin should be starting to fatigue following a long week in Acapulco. What does look incorrect to me is the total. In her 15 matches in Indians Wells Svitolina has seen 8 go 3 sets. Looking at the table above you can see both women average over 21 games on hard courts. This is the week for overs, so over 20 games for a full unit.
Daria Gavrilova -125 (1,80) vs Mihaela Buzarnescu -105 (1,95) Total Games 21.5
Perfectly priced, pass.
Caroline Garcia -115 (1,87) vs Jennifer Brady -115 (1,87) Total Games 21.5
What a good job here by tournament organizers, Garcia/Brady 3!!! Brady is 2-0 against Garcia THIS YEAR. What a great match this should be. I have no clue how to begin to handicap it. Garcia should be the better player, but she’s been awful this year. At the same time, Brady has been great this season and, oh, already beat Garcia twice. Pass.
Tatjana Maria +460 (5,60) vs Ashleigh Barty -710 (1,14) Total Games 18.5 Spread +/- 6 games
What a huge line for Barty. She is easily the better player. She deserves to be a big favorite, but this seems aggressive. It’s been a while since we’ve seen, she hasn’t played since the Fed cup. Barty also has little experience on these courts having played only 1 match here last year. That said, I can’t see Maria winning and in the WTA you can lose a 6 game spread in just a moment. Looking at their head to head I noticed both time they played they went to 3 sets. Historically 60.9% of matches in Indian Wells go over 18.5 games. I have to take the over, but just for half a unit.
Daria Kasatkina +120 (2,20) vs Marketa Vondrousova -150 (1,67) Total Games 21.5
Looking at the numbers above would lead you to believe I’m about to bet on Kasatkina. NOPE. Kastakina has been terrible this year. Kasatkina is 3-6 this year and hasn’t made it past the 2nd round. Vondrousova is one my favorite young players. There might actually be some value on Marketa, but I’m going pass.
Shuai Zhang -195 (1,51) vs Jelena Ostapenko +155 (2,55) Total Game 21.5 -/+ 3.5 games
This line makes me sad. Ostapenko used to be so good. A year and a half ago she would be -195 here. This is probably the right price. Pass.
Aliaksandra Sasnovich -130 (1,77) vs Kateryna Kozlova +100 (2,00) Total Games 21.5
Now here is some value. Sasnovich is a much better player than Kozlova. The numbers above may look close at first, but look at the difference in competition faced. Sasnovich made the quarterfinals in Brisbane and Sydney this year. Kozlova won 2 matches in Budapest. Kozlova is 2-1 in matches all before 2015. That’s the only reason this is so close. Let’s go 2 full units on Sasnovich.
Barbora Strycova +350 (4,50) vs Simona Halep -450 (1,22) Total Games 19 Spread +/- 5.5 games
Halep owns Strycova. 4-1 liftime head to head and the only time Strycova won was in 2010. All of Halep’s wins are blowouts averaging an 8 game win in her 4 wins. This is not the tournament for unders. I refuse to parlay moneylines more expensive than -300. -5.5 games is probably the look, but that’s a lot of games. I’m a little concerned about Halep’s back. She injured it at the end of last year and has looked good in spots this year, but in her last match we saw her against Bencic. She was up a set and I believe a break against Belinda Bencic and folded to lose in 3 sets. We’re approaching almost the 3 month mark of the season. I think this is the time we start to see the compounding impact of fatigue. I’m worried Halep and her back and struggling with that fatigue, pass.
Half unit Qiang Wang -4.5 games
Half unit Voegele/Stephens over 20 games
Half unit Voegele/Stephens +5 games
Full unit Svitolina/Kenin over 20 games
Half unit Maria/Barty over 18.5 games
2 units Sasnovich -130 (1,77)