WTA Rome Day 3

Yesterday 1-2 -1 unit

Season to date 135-190-16 -40.37 Units Average Odds +100 Average Units/Bet 0.97

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 using lines from my local to try to teach this lesson and make sure what I post is widely available to those who read. 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.

Rome

Naomi Osaka -235 (1,42) vs Dominika Cibulkova +185 (2,85) Total Games 21 Spread -/+ 4 games

Cibulkova finally played a good match. I thought her first round meeting with Aliaksandra Sasnovich would have been much closer than the 6-2 6-3 victory we saw for Dominika. Cibulkova has struggled the last few months to find any form, so yesterday was inspiring for her outlook for the rest of the year. Osaka has played arguably the best clay tennis of her career these last 2 weeks. She’s 5-2 in her last 7 matches and she’s never had a streak that good on the dirt. The 2 played last week in Madrid and Osaka won 2 & 6. Madrid is at altitude which plays to Osaka’s strengths on serve. The courts in Rome will take away that edge, but I think Osaka deserves to be the favorite.

Mihaela Buzarnescu +130 (2,30) vs Julia Goerges -160 (1,62) Total Games 20.5

I think the wrong women is favored in this match. Buzarnescu has the better hold+break and average games per match. Goerges clay history is sparse & unimpressive. She’s 1-3 on the dirt this year with her first win coming yesterday against Hsieh who’s also not a fan of clay. On top of that, her season since Auckland has been very poor. She’s only 7-9 on the year with a lot of bad losses. There’s one other factor at work and I have to credit my good friend @Jorgetwtstennis for pointing out that Goerges struggles against lefties. She is 3-8 in her last 11 matches against lefties and 0-5 against lefties on clay. Guess which hand Buzarnescu uses? Full unit on Buzarnescu.

Alize Cornet +115 (2,15) vs Carla Suarez Navarro -145 (1,68) Total Games 21

This match features 2 of the more disappointing clay players this season. Compare the numbers above from this season to the last 2 years and you’ll see a precipitous decline in the early clay season for both players. Both got their best clay win of the season yesterday, so maybe things are starting to improve. I see little that differentiates the 2 players and it should be a competitive match with lots of long rallies. Pass.

Amanda Anisimova +320 (4,20) vs Kiki Bertens -410 (1,24) Total Games 19 Spread +/- 5.5 games

Well, here we have a match with Kiki Bertens which means I will not be placing a wager. I have an incredible power. If I bet on Kiki Bertens she will lose. If I bet against Kiki Bertens she will win. With this great power comes some great responsibility. It’s scary for me to control one person’s life like this. She’s one of the best clay players on tour and coming off a title win in Madrid. She had a first round bye so she’s had plenty of rest and should be fresh. Anisimova is a great young player, but is likely outgunned here. This could be a fun match, it could be a blowout, or Kiki just might pass on it altogether. Enjoy the watch. Pass.

Simona Halep -305 (1,32) vs Marketa Vondrousova +245 (3,45) Total Games 19.5 Spread -/+ 5 games

These 2 are a combined 40-16 this season. Looking above you can see that both are playing unbelievable clay tennis with hold+break numbers above 130. Halep is one of, if not the, best clay players on tour. She has maintained that absurd hold+break for years and against the top competition the WTA has to offer. Vondrousova is only 20 years old, but is flying up the rankings and constantly proving that she is one of the best players on tour already. This match should be great. I expect both to hit a lot of shots that will make your jaw drop. Halep deserves to be a big favorite. The total looks a little low, but 4 & 3 is a definite possibility for a gut wrenching loss. Pass.

Daria Kasatkina -150 (1,67) vs Katerina Siniakova +120 (3,20) Total Games 21

This match is terrifying to handicap. Both of these women could come out and dominate or come out and get steamrolled, but you won’t know until it’s too late. Both players remain stoic regardless of how good or bad things are going. They each have a lot of talent, especially on clay. This could be a great match. It could be a terrible match. I have no idea. Pass.

Serena Williams -345 (1,28) vs Venus Williams +275 (3,75) Total Games 20.5 Spread -/+ 4.5 games

Welp, Serena’s knee is bothering her too much and Venus’s luck on clay continues. No preview, but I can’t help myself and have to share this:

Johanna Konta +135 (2,35) vs Sloane Stephens -165 (1,60) Total Games 20.5 Spread +/- 3 games

Konta is paying the best clay tennis of her life. Her 2nd place finish in Rabat was her first ever final on clay at the WTA level and her first final in any clay event since 2015. After her run in Rabat, she’s beaten Alison Riske twice (4 & 1 both times) and gotten smoked, 5 &1, by Simona Halep. What a surprising clay season for the Englishwoman. Sloane Stephens is one of the best movers on tour and has plenty of power to hit winners in this match. Normally there would be concerns about her effort and focus, but since establishing a partnership with coach Sven Groeneveld she’s been much steadier in her approach and end performance. She’s 6-2 on the dirt this year and both losses came to the winner of the respective tournament, Bertens in Madrid & Keys in Charleston.  I think Sloane should be a much bigger favorite than we see here. She is much better suited for the surface and although the numbers above appear close, Konta’s run in Rabat looks a little hollow when you break it down. She beat Yafan Wang, Ana Bogdan, Su Wei Hsieh & Ajla Tomljanovic before losing to Maria Sakkari in the final. All of these women are worse or at the same level of talent as Konta and all but Sakkari don’t play often or well on clay. This is Sloane’s surface and she’s going to win this match. Full unit on Sloane moneyline.

Garbiñe Muguruza -225 (1,44) vs Danielle Collins +175 (2,75) Total Games 20.5 Spread -/+ 4 games

Muguruza is so frustrating. She shows flashes of top level talent, but usually follows them up with errors that you could never imagine possible from a 2 time slam champion. She struggled to hold serve in round 1 against Zheng. I would love to fade her in this spot, but Collins just isn’t the player to do it with. She doesn’t play much clay and the bit she does is average at best. Pass.

Madison Keys -255 (1,39) vs Sofia Kenin +205 (3,05) Total Games 20 Spread -/+ 4.5 games

The numbers above and Keys overall pedigree are driving the pricing we see. Kenin hasn’t had much experience on clay and the little she does have is uninspiring. I was surprised to see her wallop Paolini 1 & 2 like she did. If you listened to the @NetWorthPod this past week, our good friend @Mayuhayu9 called Kenin “Wozniacki 2.0” which was surprising at first, but insightful. He watches a ton of tennis and see the grinder mentality that Wozniacki has turned into greatness. I’m not sure if Kenin is nearly as talented, but she’s mentally strong which is not something you can say about a lot of players on the WTA tour. I’m not going to back her in this spot, but she has my attention these next few weeks. Let’s see what she can do against a top notch opponent. Pass.

Kristina Mladenovic +110 (2,10) vs Belinda Bencic -140 (1,71) Total Games 21

Bencic looked amazing today. She was down a set and 0-3* to Anastasija Sevastova who is a top level clay talent. Belinda didn’t quit and came all the back to win the match. She seems to be getting more and more comfortable on the dirt after a 2 year hiatus. Mladenovic is also finding some great form. Her work with Sacha Bajin has helped her immensely. She’s a very live dog in this match, but at that price I don’t see any value. Pass.

Anett Kontaveit -155 (1,64) vs Maria Sakkari +125 (2,25) Total Games 21

Sakkari is on fire at the moment. She is 11-3 in her last 14 matches with a title win in Rabat. Take a look at her numbers above, very impressive. Kontaveit is one of the steadiest presences on clay. Her numbers are good and her game fits the surface beautifully. She deserves to be the favorite and she should win the match, but I’m not getting in front of the runaway train. Sakkari had to qualify to be here, so I expect her to be fully focused and not thinking at all about a break before the French Open. If she wants time off she can take it next week if she has a nice showing in Rome. Pass.

Yulia Putintseva +355 (4,55) vs Petra Kvitova -455 (1,21) Total games 19.5 Spread +/- 5.5 games

What a fun player Putintseva is. She has a lot of talent and puts maximum effort and energy into every match. Her celebrations after wins can be a little over the top, but I like the enthusiasm. Some of these women lose that spark and it’s a shame. Unfortunately her time in Rome has likely come to an end. Kvitova is in the conversation as the best player in the world right now. I struggle to think of one woman that would be a favorite over Petra in a tennis match. She doesn’t have a ton of success historically in Rome, but that’s usually because she’s coming off a long run in Madrid. She only made it to the quarterfinals in Madrid after winning the event in 2018. I expect to her to be focuses in a few matches here to pick up the ranking points she lost in Madrid. This pricing looks right for the most part. Pass.

Recap

Full unit – Buzarnescu +130 (2,30)

Full unit – Stephens -165 (1,60)