Welcome to the first online preview for the 2018. After a couple of twitter plays got narrowly beaten from commanding positions, I thought it would be worth going back to basics and getting some previews up for some of the more confident plays I have found today, because after all it is always good to know the reasoning behind a play.
K Kanepi vs H Watson
I really thought Kanepi would open around $1.30 in this meeting. I do like Heather Watson, and her ability to counterpunch when she is on song is very impressive. I thought she may have taken her game to the next level last year on the back of some decent doubles performances as well, however she just couldn’t get things going in 2017, finishing with a ranking of 75 in the world.
This week, Watson had an early scare against Danielle Lao in round 1 of qualifying, where she had to save set points against Lao in the first set, and was down a break early in the second set, before prevailing 7-5 6-3. In the second round, she came up against Misaki Doi (who I feel is really starting to struggling at the top level of women’s tennis). She had control of the whole match, winning 25 of 27 points on her first serve, winning 6-2 6-4.
Kaia Kanepi had a fantastic finish to 2017, going on a 14/3 run to push her way back into the top 100. She has been in control of both of her matches so far, defeating Australians Birrell and Tomic in straight sets. She has earned 24 break points across both matches, meaning she is consistently getting deep into her opponents service games, which is great considering she has quite a strong serve herself.
In matches like this, I really like to be backing the player who will dictate the majority of points throughout that match. Combine Kanepi’s solid serving stats, with her ability to consistently pressure on the return of serve, as well as her strong finish to 2017, and this forms the foundations of a confident play here. Kanepi will know she doesn’t need to redline to win here, and she should use her experience to dictate the majority of points in this match without consistently overhitting.
5 units Kanepi to defeat Watson at $1.61 at Pinnacle