I managed to find 2 chokers yesterday on the blog picks. Both matches were excellent for trading though with Stosur and Koukalova throwing away leads in the third set.
I had a good start with the Shark tips selections with all 3 winning. Just a pity Svitolina didn’t hit our entry price and that pick was void. Always good to start the season with winners.
WTA ASB Classic, Auckland, 23:00 – Wickmayer v Townsend
Wickmayer had a couple of decent weeks in February but she didn’t make it beyond the second round for the rest of the season. In Auckland she lost in the first round to Kristyna Pliskova and was bageled in the second set.
Townsend made huge improvements to her ranking in 2014 moving up around 250 places. Her best weeks came in ITF events and apart from her last event of the year in Toronto where she reached the semi finals her best results were on clay. He does have an excellent game for hard courts though and we should see her improve her ranking even further this season.
They start around evens and whilst Wickmayer has much more experience I think Townsend has a great chance if she keeps her head today. If she can control her power and play smart tennis she can benefit from the errors that Wickmayer always suffers from at some point in her matches.
I would prefer to lay Wickmayer if she goes a break ahead in the early games.
WTA Brisbane, 02:15 – Muguruza v Mattek Sands
Muguruza made a lot of headlines last season and finished the year ranked 20th. She had started the season at 63rd. She could feel a little more pressure this season as everyone now expects her to achieve those standards week in, week out.
Muguruza started the 2014 season extremely well reaching the quarter finals in Auckland and then winning Hobart the following week as a qualifier.
Today’s opponent is fiery American Mattek Sands who had some problems with illness in 2014. her best week came in Sydney in January where she reached the quarter finals as a qualifier. The rest of the season was unremarkable and she never made it past a second round. There was the occasional good performance including a win over Bouchard in Doha.
As long as the pressure of expectation isn’t too much for her Muguruza should have too much for Sands. Her SP of 1.33 isn’t very tempting though and i’ll keep an eye on it in the hope of getting a better early price. Anything over 1.60 would be nice.