WTA Madrid Open Best Bets – May 11th
And then there were two. The 2019 Madrid Open women’s final is set after two very well played semifinal matches. Simona Halep started the day with a tough three set win over Belinda Bencic to advance to her fourth Madrid Open final. If Halep wins the title Saturday she will not only have her third Madrid Open title, but she will also return to #1 in the rankings. Halep will be playing 2018 finalist Kiki Bertens in the final. Bertens fought off three set points, in the second set, and then broke Sloane Stephens to win 6-2 7-5. This will be Kiki Bertens consecutive Madrid Open final and it will be her third Premier Mandatory final of her career. Bertens lost the Madrid Open last season, but was able to beat Simona Halep in the final at Cincinnati last season.
#3 Halep vs #7 Bertens for the Madrid Open title. It’s going to be a good one.
Here is my pick for the women’s final in Madrid.
Simona Halep (-175) vs Kiki Bertens (+137)
Simona Halep enters her 16th career Premier Mandatory/Premier 5 final after she fought off a feisty Belinda Bencic in the semifinal Friday. Halep is 7-8 in her previous 15 finals, at this level of tournament, but is on a 1-5 run in her last six. Halep lost just 20 games total in her first four matches this tournament and cruised in both sets she won in the semifinal, so the Romanian is in great form at the moment. This will be Halep’s second final of the season as she lost the final in Doha to Elise Mertens.
Kiki Bertens continues her great 2019 with a straightforward 6-2 7-5 win over Sloane Stephens in the semifinals. Bertens has yet to drop a set this week which is impressive anytime, but considering the Dutchwoman has played Jelena Ostapenko, Anastasija Sevastova, Petra Kvitova and Sloane Stephens, the feat is even more impressive. This will be Berten’s second final of the season as she won the title in St. Petersburg, defeating Donna Vekic, back in early February.
I like Simona Halep to get the win and to get back to the #1 spot in the rankings.
The overall H2H is 2-2 and the clay H2H is 1-1.
YTD Tennis Results: 133-86
WTA Madrid Open Results: 9-5
WTA Madrid Open Best Bets – May 10th
Only four women remain at the 2019 Madrid Open after an exciting day of quarterfinals on Thursday. Simona Halep opened the day with a thorough 7-5 7-7 win over Ash Barty. Naomi Osaka was serving for a straight set win, over Belinda Bencic, but was broken and ended up losing to the Swiss in three sets. With Halep’s win, and Osaka’s loss, Halep has a chance to regain #1 in the world if she wins the tournamnet this week.
The third semifinal of the day saw Sloane Stephens easily take out Petra Martic in straight sets, 6-4 6-3. Stephens faced just two break points all match and was able to get 83% of her first serves in play which helped her comfortably win. The final semifinalist is Kiki Bertens who got revenge over Petra Kvitova and comfortably advanced with a 6-2 6-3 win. Bertens was broken just one time, but was able to break the Czech five times on her way to victory.
#3 Halep vs Bencic. #7 Bertens vs #8 Stephens. What a semifinal day.
Here are my best bets for the semifinal action in Madrid.
Simona Halep (-357) vs Belinda Bencic (+275)
Simona Halep improves to 6-0 this clay court season with a convincing 7-5 7-5 victory over world #9 Ash Barty. Halep has looked dominant this week as she has yet to drop a set and has lost just 20 games total in her four matches. The 2018 French Open champion, and two time Madrid champion, Halep looks primed to not only win this title, but make another run for the French Open title.
Belinda Bencic was only able to win five matches on clay, from 2015-2018, but this year she is having her breakout season on the surface as she currently sits at 8-3 and has made both a quarterfinal, in Charleston, and this semifinal in Madrid. Bencic has never won a clay court title in her career, at any level, but she is just two tough wins away.
Bencic is going to put up a fight, but Simona Halep is too good at the moment and she advances to the final.
Belinda Bencic leads the H2H 2-1, but this will be the first meeting on clay.
Kiki Bertens (-206) vs Slone Stephens (+181)
Kiki Bertens continued her great 2019 with an easy 6-2 6-3 win over Petra Kvitova on Thursday. Bertens avenged the semifinal loss to Kvitova from Stuttgart a few weeks back and now sits at 8-2 on clay this season. This is Bertens second consecutive semifinal on clay and she looks like she might be ready to make a run in Rolland Garros a few weeks from now. Besides from her semifinal run, in 2016, Bertens has surprisingly not done well at the French Open, so this has to give her some confidence.
Sloane Stephens is through to her first semifinal since Montreal, last August, after a straightforward 6-4 6-3 win over Petra Martic in the quarters. Stephens needed a nice, easy victory after going through two straight three setters the matches before. The top ranked American now sits at 6-2 on clay this season and 14-7 overall. The 2018 French Open runner up looks to be gearing up to make another long run at Rolland Garros.
I like Kiki Bertens to get the win on Friday.
Sloane Stephens leads the H2H 2-0 and 1-0 on clay.
YTD Tennis Results: 129-86
WTA Madrid Open Results: 7-5
WTA Madrid Open Best Bets – May 8th
Tuesday at the Madrid Open saw a big upset, on the women’s side of the tournament, and some big names pushed a bit. 2018 semifinalist, and the #5 seed this year, Karolina Pliskova was knocked out by Kateryna Kozlova in three sets in what ended up being the upset of the day. World #1, Naomi Osaka, was pushed to three sets, but she was able to get past Sara Sorribes Tormo and advance. Donna Vekic, Caroline Garcia, Saisai Zheng, Simona Halep and Aliaksandra Sasnovich all advanced as well. Petra Martic got a walkover win over #4 Angie Kerber to set up a Round of 16 matchup with Donna Vekic.
The Round of 16 will take place on Wednesday with Sloane Stephens, Simona Halep, Kiki Bertens, Petra Kvitova and Ash Barty all in action.
Here are my two best bets for Wednesday in Madrid.
Kiki Bertens (-303) vs Anastasija Sevastova (+240)
2018 Madrid Open finalist has started her week with two convincing victories over Katerina Siniakova and Jelena Ostapenko. Bertens has turned into an all-surface player, but she has been a dominant clay player since 2014. In those five year Bertens has compiled a 103-33 record, on clay, and has won five career clay court title titles. Berten’s opponent on Wednesday is no slouch on clay herself as Anastasija Sevastova has won two career titles on the surface and has a 64-33 record on the surface in the past five year. Sevastova will be looking to make her third quarterfinal of the season with a win.
Kiki Bertens advances to the quarters.
The H2H is tied 1-1 with both meetings coming on clay at Madrid.
Naomi Osaka (-278) vs Aliaksandra Sasnovich (+220)
Naomi Osaka has yet to lose on clay this season as she is now 4-0, with one retirement, following her three set win over Sara Sorribes Tormo on Tuesday. Osaka is probably the best player on tour right now, backed up by her #1 ranking, but she has never been a great clay court players so this start has to be good to see for the young 21-year-old. Aliaksandra Sasnovich backed up her first round upset of Anett Kontaveit with a 6-2 6-2 straight set win over Anna Schmiedlova on Tuesday. Sasnovich has not had a winning season, on clay, since 2015, but her 2-0 start will give the Belarusian some confidence heading into this clash with Osaka.
Naomi Osaka advances to the quarters.
Naomi Osaka leads the H2H 2-0, but this will be the first meeting on clay.
YTD Tennis Results: 125-82
WTA Madrid Open Results: 5-3
WTA Madrid Open Best Bets – May 7th
The women got the second round of the Madrid Open underway on Monday and it was a straightforward day of results. All of the seeded players advanced, most in straight sets, and there were no real surprises. The only two seeded players to go to three sets were Sloane Stephens, who prevailed over Victoria Azarenka, and Ash Barty who got past Danielle Collins.
Tuesday concludes the second round with the likes of Simona Halep, Naomi Osaka, Karolina Pliskova and Angie Kerber all in action. The match of the day is probably Angie Kerber vs Petra Martic, but Simona Halep vs Jo Konta is a nice matchup as well.
Here are my two best bets for Tuesday in Madrid.
Karolina Pliskova (-278) vs Kateryna Kozlova (+200)
Karolina Pliskova had a scare in the first round, going down a set and facing four match points, against Dayana Yastremska, but the Czech was able to pull out a three set victory. The 2018 semifinalist is just 1-1 on clay this season and will look to use Madrid as a momentum builder for Rolland Garros. Kateryna Kozlova knocked out Shuai Zhang in straight sets to advance to the second round in Madrid. The Ukrainian has a nice 9-2 record on dirt this season, but most of those wins have come in qualifying draws as she has just 3 main draw clay wins. Karolina Pliskova advances to the Round of 16.
This will be the first meeting between the two.
Angie Kerber (-189) vs Petra Martic (+137)
Angie Kerber cruised to a 6-3 6-2 victory over her first round opponent, Lesia Tsurenko, and will look to clear the second round hurdle for just the second time in her last four tournaments. Kerber, who has three career clay court titles, held a 20-7 hardcourt record before entering clay season and will look to build off that momentum in Madrid this week. Petra Martic has been one of the hottest women on clay this season, as she currently sits at 10-1, a stretch that includes her first ever WTA title, in Istanbul, and a semifinal run in Charleston. This will be a high quality matchup and I like Petra Martic to pull the slight upset.
The H2H is tied 1-1, but Kerber leads 1-0 on clay.
YTD Tennis Results: 123-80
WTA Madrid Open Results: 4-2
WTA Madrid Open Best Bets – May 6th
The Madrid Open got off and running on Sunday with 22 main draw matches and it was a day filled with some upsets. We saw the #6, #11, #13, #15 and #16 seeds all lose on Sunday as this tournament is shaping up to be a wild one. With all those upsets we did see the main top seeds advance as Angie Kerber, Simona Halep and Karolina Pliskova all advanced to the second round.
Monday brings us nine second round matchups with Sloane Stephens vs Victoria Azarenka the headlining match of the day. Kiki Bertens, Jelena Ostapenko, Ash Barty, Petra Kvitova and Belinda Bencic are all also in action on Monday.
Here are my two best bets for Monday in Madrid.
Sloane Stephens (-125) vs Victoria Azarenka (-111)
2018 French Open runner up, Sloane Stephens, opened her clay season with a run to the quarters in Charleston one month ago, but she has not played much tennis since then. Stephens opened her Madrid campaign with a 6-2 7-6(4) win over Polona Hercog on Sunday and will be looking to find some form this season as she currently sits at 11-7 this season. Victoria Azarenka, who has been forces to retire in her last two tournaments, started off her Madrid Open week with a 7-5 6-4 win over Daria Kasatkina. Azarenka is a two time finalist of this tournament, but her week ends early this time. Take Sloane Stephens to get the win.
The H2H is tied 3-3 and this will be the first meeting on clay.
Belinda Bencic (-175) vs Svetlana Kuznetsova (+125)
Belinda Bencic opened her Madrid Open campaign with a straightforward 6-4 6-3 win over Alison van Uytvanck Sunday. The Swiss had a successful start to the clay season, with a run to the quarters in Charleston, but she fell early in her following two tournaments leading up to Madrid. Bencic has never been a good clay court player, but she is currently in her best form in years, so don’t be surprised to see Bencic put it all together on this surface. Svetlana Kuznetsova returned from a long injury layoff less than one month ago and she has managed to get at least one win in all four tournaments since coming back. The 2009 French Open champion is looking to build up some momentum as she prepares to play Rolland Garros 10 years after her triumph. I like Belinda Bencic to get the win.
Belinda Bencic leads the H2H 3-1, but this will be the first meeting on clay.
YTD Tennis Results: 120-79
WTA Madrid Open Results: 2-2
WTA Madrid Open Best Bets – May 5th
The women got the Madrid Open off and running on Saturday with 10 matches and some nice tennis being played. There were three upsets on the day with the biggest being Aliaksandra Sansovich, who went off at +350, knocking out the #14 seed Anett Kontaveit. Jelena Ostapenko, who went off at +150, and Svetlana Kuznetsova, who went off at +120, also won in upset fashion on Saturday. Kuznetsova knocked out the #10 seed Aryna Sabalenka while Ostapenko knocked out Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. Other than those three upsets it was business as usual for the favorites as the only one who even went to three sets was Anastasija Sevastova.
This tournament gets rolling on Sunday with 22 main draw matches including Naomi Osaka, Angie Kerber, Simona Halep, Caroline Wozniacki and Karolina Pliskova all getting their campaigns started.
Here are my two best bests for Sunday in Madrid.
Belinda Bencic (-227) vs Alison Van Uytvanck (+162)
Belinda Bencic made a decent start to her clay season as she advanced to the quarterfinals of in Charleston, but in her two tournaments since she has a disappointing first round exit, in Lugano, and a Round of 16 round defeat in Stuttgart. Bencic won just one clay court match, between 2016 and 2018, so sitting at 4-3 is a good start for the Swiss. Alison Van Uytvanck enters Madrid off a semifinal run in Rabat last week. Since the start of 2017 Van Uytvanck sits at 18-12 on clay, but she has never advanced to a clay court final. This could be tricky for Belinda Bencic, but I still like the Swiss to the win.
Belinda Bencic leads the H2H 3-1, but this will be the first meeting on clay.
Garbine Muguruza (-152) vs Petra Martic (+110)
The 2016 French Open champion, Garbine Muguruza, begins her 2019 clay court season looking to keep up her recent good form as she begins her Madrid Open campaign. Muguruza has not played since the hardcourts of Monterrey, in the beginning of April, but the Spaniard did walk away from Mexico with the title. Muguruza only has one career clay court title, that 2016 French Open championship, but she has had a nice W/L record over the years on this surface. Petra Martic enters the Madrid Open after a good start to her clay court season as she won the championship in Istanbul and went on a semifinal run in Charleston. The title in Istanbul puts Martic’s record in 2019, on clay, to 9-1 and over the last three years she now sits at 25-9. This is a very good first round match and I like Garbine Muguruza to get the win.
Garbine Muguruza leads the H2H 1-0 and that one meeting was on clay.
YTD Tennis Results: 115-76
WTA Madrid Open Results: 1-1
The women get the 2019 Madrid Open off and running on Saturday with 10 matches featuring five top 12 seeds. Petra Kvitova (#2), Kiki Bertens (#7), Ash Barty (#9), Aryna Sabalenka (#10) and Anastasija Sevastova (#12). Two former French Open champions also get their campaigns started on Saturday as Jelena Ostapenko, the 2017 champion, and Svetlana Kuznetsova, the 2009 French Open champion, are in action.
Here are my two best bests for the first day of action in Madrid.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (-154) vs Jelena Ostapenko (+134)
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova returns to Madrid looking to get past the first round hurdle. Last year at this tournament the Russian fell to Sam Stosur in three sets, so the good news is that the world #35 has no points to defend this week. Pavlyuchenkova has competed in just one clay court tournament this season and she fell in the second round, in Stuttgart, to eventual runner up Anett Kontaveit. The inconsistent Jelena Ostapenko also returns to Madrid looking to get a win this week. Last year the Latvian #2 fell to Irina Begu in straight sets, so she will also look to get a win here this week. The former French Open champ has gone just 7-7 on clay the past two seasons and she currently sits at just 6-13 overall in 2019. Unable to keep the ball in the court, Ostapenko, has been the reason for many of her losses this season. Neither woman is in great form at the moment, but I like Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova to get the win.
Jelena Ostapenko leads the H2H 2-1, but this will be their first meeting on clay.
Yulia Putintseva (-190) vs Irina Begu (+165)
Last season’s surprise French Open quarterfinalist, Yulia Putintseva, comes to Madrid for the first time since 2017 as she did not compete her last season. Putintseva had a few fortunate matchups in the 2018 French Open and she took full advantage of it by making her first every major quarterfinal. Putintseva is a very talented player, but she has been extremely inconsistent this season as she has won consecutive matches in just two main draws this season. Putintseva will face Irina Begu who pulled off a first round upset last season in this tournament. The Romanian easily knocked out the #5 seed, Jelena Ostapenko, before falling to Maria Sharapova in the second round. Begu enters this tournamnet sitting at 6-9 this season and is currently on a five match losing streak. I like Yulia Putintseva to advance to the second round.
Yulia Putintseva leads the H2H 1-0, but this will be the first match on clay.
YTD Tennis Results: 112-73
WTA Madrid Open Results