Simona Halep v Kiki Bertens
The run that Kiki Bertens had at the French Open has boosted her World Ranking, but might have more importantly boosted her confidence. The Dutchwoman showed she had a very big game in that run to the Semi Final before coming up against Serena Williams and it was no surprise that she decided to bypass any grass events prior to Wimbledon.
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It has allowed Bertens to get healthier and her two wins this week have been impressive, although Simona Halep is the biggest test she would have faced so far at Wimbledon. This is already the best run Bertens has had at Wimbledon and she has erased the painful memories of last season when she helped open Centre Court on theTuesday in a hammering at the hands of Petra Kvitova.
Halep also was beaten in the First Round at Wimbledon last year and she has struggled at this Grand Slam notwithstanding one Semi Final run in 2014. Her two wins this week have been fairly comfortable, but Halep will have to make sure she controls the unforced errors if she is going to get the better of Bertens in this tough Third Round clash.
I have little doubt there will be some difficult moments for both players to negotiate, but I do feel the consistency Halep has might help her past Bertens. After some breaks both ways, I think Halep can work her way through to a 64, 64 win.
HANDICAP BETTING PICK: Simona Halep -3.5 Games at 1.92 with Eastbridge
Lucie Safarova v Jana Cepelova
Last year it was Simona Halep and this year it is Garbine Muguruza who has suffered a big upset loss to Jana Cepelova. There is no time for that result to be digested by Cepelova as she is back in Third Round action on Friday and I do wonder if she is going to be able to back up that win over the Number 2 Seed.
Cepelova will be tested to the fullest by Lucie Safarova who has the game for the grass courts as proved by a Semi Final run in 2014. This year has been very difficult for Safarova as she has looked to recover from injury and wins have been hard to come by.
However the lefty serve can be tough for opponents to read and Safarova has some very strong groundstrokes that will give Cepelova things to think about. I also can’t ignore the fact that Cepelova was beaten comfortably enough in her match following the win over Halep last year and she does not have the best record on the grass courts outside of those two memorable wins.
As long as Safarova serves well to keep the pressure on Cepelova, I think the Czech player can succeed where Muguruza failed and wins this match 63, 64.
HANDICAP BETTING PICK: Lucie Safarova -3.5 Games @ 1.85 with Pinnacle
Prices correct at time of writing.