The infamous Kremlin Cup starts today. Always plenty of rumours about match fixing in that one!
In Luxembourg Niculescu takes on Oprandi. Oprandi starts as favourite at 1.46 which is a little low even against Niculescu who has been struggling with form. Oprandi has been playing well and generally serving well too. I think this could be close unless Oprandi has a big day on serve but i would still be happier with my money on her. I’ll wait for a higher price on her, perhaps 1.65 or better.
Update: Awful start from Oprandi. She just didn’t look interested. However when Niculescu was 5-2 up Oprandi started playing a little better. She pulled back to 5-5 and had 3bp in the next game but didn’t take them. Nic won the set in the tie break.
Niculescu won 7-6, 6-1.
Schiavone retired from her last match and today starts as slight underdog against Ursula Radwanska. Neither player has been on a good run of form on indoor hard courts with Schiavone losing her last 5 and Baby Rad losing 4 of her last 5.
I will put part stake on Radwanska at the start but this one could be a very “swingy” match if Schiavone is fit enough to compete. . I’d expect Radwanska to get off to a better start but would happier putting my money in above evens. Schiavone has a decent record at this tournament winning the title in 2009 and reaching the final in 2006 but nothing more recent.
Update: Schiavone broke at the start of the match but after that it was all URad.
Radwanska won 6-3, 6-1.
A lot of today’s games look a bit like a lottery. Suarez Navarro beat Rybarikova last week in straight sets so seems a decent price at 1.85. Carla wasn’t impressive at all against Mattek Sands which is probably the reason for the price being higher than expected.
Update: Navarro was well in control of the first set but somehow managed to let Rybarikova back into it. She lost the set ina tie break ( a theme amongst the blog games today!)
Rybarikova won 7-6, 6-4.
Gimeno Traver played a Challenger clay event a couple of weeks ago which he won. That wasn’t the best preperation for this week but Rosol hasn’t been in the best of form. Rosol starts at 1.70 and I’ll watch to see who looks better on the day but GT has a chance especially if Rosol’s serve isn’t working well.
Update: Another blog pick to go down in the first set in a tie break! Rosol won 7-6, 7-6.