ATP Antwerp/WTA Moscow Tennis Handicap Betting Preview – Friday 21st October by @DavAulak

Richard Gasquet v Jan-Lennard Struff

The indoor hard courts have seen the best performances from Jan-Lennard Struff through his career and he has reached the Quarter Final in Antwerp. However he has had some trouble along the way and the match with Richard Gasquet is another step up from his previous opponents.

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The win over Gilles Simon was impressive, but I am not sure how much Simon had left in the tank after a long and gruelling week in Shanghai which had ended just a few days ago. Travelling all the way back to Europe and playing in this tournament doesn’t sound the most appealing of schedules but Simon still had enough chances to win that match with Struff.

Gasquet should be the best server that Struff has faced this week and that has to be a concern when you think he has given up 28 break points in just two matches. Struff should be full of confidence having won a Challenger event on this circuit recently but he is scheduled to be at the Vienna Qualifying this weekend and I wonder if he will have the fight to dig in if he does get behind by a set.

It hasn’t been the most productive few weeks for Gasquet, but he was an easy winner in the Second Round and has plenty of indoor hard court experience too. If he can use that effectively I think the Frenchman can come through with a 6-4, 6-4 win and a place in the Semi Final to come on Saturday.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Richard Gasquet -3.5 Games @ 1.78 with Pinnacle

Pablo Cuevas v Diego Sebastian Schwartzman

There is no doubting that Pablo Cuevas as a Seed in a hard court event is very vulnerable and his best tennis is restricted to the clay courts. He has been very good on the clay this season which has seen him move up to Number 22 in the World Rankings and likely a Seed for the Australian Open, but that means I tend to stay away from him when it comes to being a favourite on the hard courts.

Cuevas hasn’t shown a lot of positive form since the Tour moved onto the last quarter of the season which is predominantly a hard court time of the year. I think it is also telling that he has not won back to back matches on this surface in the last twelve months and so it might come as a surprise that I am going to back him to win this Quarter Final.

That has much to do with the opponent he is facing as he meets fellow South American Diego Sebastian Schwartzman, another player who doesn’t have a lot of hard court form behind him and who is much more comfortable on the slower surfaces. Schwartzman should be credited for winning two matches in Antwerp already, but he too had been struggling with the move back to the hard courts.

The match up should be one that Cuevas enjoys much more as it should be one that develops into the kind of rallies you would see on the slower surfaces. I do think Cuevas has the bigger serve, which could be key, although the doubt remains with his lack of results on the hard courts in the past. However, I think Cuevas won’t have too many better chances to reach a Semi Final of an indoor hard court event and I think he battles through with a 6-4, 5-7, 6-4 win.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Pablo Cuevas -1.5 Games @ 1.82 with 188BET

 

Tennis Handicap Betting Preview

Diego Sebastian Schwartzman

Julia Goerges v Daria Gavrilova

 A couple of years ago Julia Goerges might have been considered a player that would be making the next step in her career to challenge some of the better players on the Tour. That hasn’t really happened for her on the Singles Tour, but she has performed better on the Doubles Tour which should see her competing at the WTA Finals next week.

For now she can concentrate on finishing her Singles season on a high as she gets set for this tough Semi Final with Daria Gavrilova. Both players have shown good form this week and I imagine Gavrilova will be going to Doubles partner Daria Kasatkina for tips having seen Goerges beat her handily in the Quarter Final.

I think Gavrilova has a little more power off the ground than Kasatkina at this stage of their careers though and that should give Goerges a few more things to think about. However Goerges has been setting up her play very well this week behind her serve and it should be able to keep her in this match and potentially win outright.

I really don’t think there is as much between the players as the layers clearly believe. Both should have their moments and, unless Goerges is thinking about heading to Singapore for the Doubles event at the WTA Finals, I think both realise how much is on the line in terms of vital Ranking points they can earn this week.

It wouldn’t surprise me at all if we need three sets to separate these players, but Goerges is the kind of streaky player that can be hard to stop when she is putting her tennis together like she has this week. Backing her with the games should be enough for the cover if this does go deep into a third set like I am anticipating, while I can’t rule out Goerges winning this one straight up and at odds against I will back her with the start.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Julia Goerges +2.5 Games @ 2.03 with Pinnacle

Prices correct at time of writing.

By @DavAulak.

 

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WTA Tennis Handicap Betting Preview – Thursday 20th October by @DavAulak

Petra Kvitova v Johanna Larsson – WTA Luxembourg

The WTA Finals are out of reach for Petra Kvitova but she will be heading to the WTA Elite tournament which is played a week after that event. The form has most definitely improved in the final weeks of the season which included a title win in Wuhan and Kvitova showed her mental strength by coming through her Second Round match after dropping the first set.

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This is a tough Quarter Final for Kvitova against Johanna Larsson who has a decent serve and that can pose problems.

The Swede has a great kicker, but Larsson can struggle to deal with the power that comes back and Kvitova has plenty of that for this match. They did play a tight match in Indian Wells earlier this season which was won by Kvitova in three sets, but it perhaps should have been easier as Kvitova had more than double the break points and won 44% of the points against the Larsson serve.

Similar numbers will make it difficult for Larsson to stay with Kvitova who looks to be in much stronger form now than she was back in March. While this does look a lot of games on the face of things, Kvitova has been dominating opponents in wins over the last month and I think she can wear down Larsson and record a 63, 63 win for a place in the Semi Final.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Petra Kvitova -5.5 Games @ 1.79 with 888 Sport

 

WTA Tennis Handicap Betting Preview 20/10

Caroline Wozniacki

Caroline Wozniacki v Monica Niculescu – WTA Luxembourg

Any talk of an impending retirement have been put to the back burner by Caroline Wozniacki’s recent form which has taken her back inside the top 20 in the World Rankings. The former World Number 1 is ending the 2016 with the kind of momentum that should give her confidence to take into the 2017 season and I think she looks strong for a position in the Semi Final in Luxembourg.

The Quarter Final match up against Monica Niculescu should be one that Wozniacki enjoys having beaten her in all seven previous matches on the main Tour. Wozniacki hasn’t dropped a set in those matches and she would have covered this number in all seven matches too as she can handle the variation that Niculescu brings to the court.

There are enough areas on the court where Niculescu will struggle to hurt Wozniacki and that has proven to be the case in the past. Even in defensive positions Wozniacki knows she can go to the forehand and it will almost neutralise her position and give her a chance to get back into the rally.

That is so important and Wozniacki should have enough success through this match to move through with a relatively straight-forward 63, 63 win. I thought the layers would have asked for Wozniacki to cover at least another game especially as Wozniacki is in very good form including winning the title in Hong Kong last week. I don’t mind though and will take the Danish player to cover on Thursday.

Tennis Handicap Betting Pick: Caroline Wozniacki -4.5 Games @ 1.73 Pinnacle

Prices correct at time of writing.

By @DavAulak.

 

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WTA Linz Tennis Handicap Betting Preview – Friday 14th October By @DavAulak

Carla Suarez Navarro v Denisa Allertova

I will admit that I am not always keen to back Carla Suarez Navarro when it comes to big numbers like this for her to cover. While the Spaniard has found a way to win matches, her serve can be attacked and that makes it hard to trust her to win matches by a margin to cover this number of games.

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However, on this occasion I do think Suarez Navarro can cover against Denisa Allertova even though the Czech player has produced two very good wins this week. Allertova does have some strong qualities and I have watched her play at times and really respected what she can do, but I am not sure she has the consistency to stick with Suarez Navarro in this one.

Allertova’s recent losses have come against players who can make plenty of balls and to players who don’t have the biggest serves on the Tour either. I think this suggests that Suarez Navarro will be able to outmanoeuvre her in this Quarter Final as long as she mentally doesn’t check out of the sets.

The recent form displayed by Suarez Navarro is not very encouraging, but she has played well in Linz as she tries to keep alive her hopes of making it to Singapore. Her two wins have come by comfortable margins and I think she will come through a tough first set before pulling away with a 7-5, 6-3 win and move into the Semi Final on Saturday.

HANDICAP BETTING PICK: Carla Suarez Navarro -4.5 Games at 2.20 with Pinnacle

 

Tennis Handicap Betting

Carla Suarez Navarro

Madison Keys v Oceane Dodin

This has been a good week to back Madison Keys who has covered for me in both of her matches in Linz ahead of this Quarter Final. I am looking for Keys to make it a hat-trick of wins when she takes on Oceane Dodin, although the Frenchwoman is someone who I feel is destined for a solid career on the WTA Tour.

Unfortunately, I think there is still some developing for Dodin to do before she can really match some of the better players on the Tour. The recent form does make Dodin dangerous as she will have built up plenty of confidence, but she won’t have faced the kind of firepower that Keys brings to the court too often in that run.

Once again the Keys serve is going to be so important in this match as that shot inspires the rest of her game. She will certainly also look to attack the Dodin second serve and I think trying to deal with that power is going to be eye opening for the Frenchwoman who will be able to get away with some shots at the level she has been competing in, but not able to do the same against Keys.

I do think it will take Keys a bit of time to assess what Dodin brings to the court so the first set could be tight. If Keys continues to serve as well as she has in the last couple of rounds, I do think she will put the pressure on Dodin and eventually wear her down in this one and come through with a 6-4, 6-2 win.

HANDICAP BETTING PICK: Madison Keys -5.5 Games at 2.20 with Eastbridge Sports Betting Brokerage

 

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova v Dominika Cibulkova

The chase for a spot in the WTA Finals has clearly motivated Dominika Cibulkova who has won both of her matches very easily so far this week. This might be the biggest challenge she has faced though against Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova who is the defending Champion in Linz and has played her best tennis in weeks here.

Matches between these players have been very competitive in the past and I am anticipating another one on Friday. You can see that they match up well with each other but Cibulkova’s edge in terms of her movement around the court should prove to be the decisive factor in the match.

In saying that, I don’t think it is going to be straight forward for Cibulkova with both players possessing plenty of power on the groundstrokes and the first strike being extremely important. If Cibulkova gives Pavlyuchenkova too many second serves to look at, I think she could be put in big trouble off the return, while generally Cibulkova’s serve is not as effective as the Russian’s can be.

I just don’t know if Pavlyuchenkova is going to have the consistency to continue finding the big winners over two hours that these players are likely to spend on court. Winning a set should still give Pavlyuchenkova a chance to cover this number though and I am expecting her to do that, although ultimately her defence of the title her might come up short as Cibulkova battles to a 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 win.

HANDICAP BETTING PICK: Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova +3.5 games at 1.92 with Unibet

Prices correct at time of writing.

By @DavAulak.

 

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