TODAY’S TIP AS FOLLOWS:
MATCH: MARIA SHARAPOVA (RUSSIA) VS FLAVIA PENNETTA (ITALY)
EVENT: WTA FINALS SINGAPORE
START TIME: 11:30 UK TIME
TIP: LAY SHARAPOVA @1.35, BACK @1.75
STOP LOSS: NOT SUGGESTED
STAKE SUGGESTED: 3% TOTAL (2% TO BE USED @ THE START)
DELAY AND TRADE : NOT SUGGESTED
PLAYER FORM & COMPARISON:
Both are very attacking minded players normally.
Maria has a ton of experience on the big stage. Nevertheless,it must be said that 2015 has been Pennetta’s biggest year yet as she won the US Open title.
While the aggression factor may point towards Maria, the serve percentages and overall consistency may very well be the Italian’s natural strengths.
The tournament started disastrously for Flavia Pennetta who got blown away by Simona Halep in the first match. She then came back strongly to beat Aga Radwanska in 2 sets.
For Sharapova,the first match against Radwanska was a pretty tough one which she eventually managed to win in a tight 3 setter. She then put on a solid performance against Simona Halep beating the Romanian in 2 sets.
While current form definitely favours Maria, it is worth noting that Pennetta does NOT have a losing head to head record against her Russian opponent. Also, beating Radwanska in 2 sets is never an easy task for any WTA player at the moment, which she managed to accomplish.
While, she should be the underdog today, I am not sure if the pricing is quite right for this match as the Italian has already beaten Sharapova earlier this year at Indian Wells. Also one can’t ignore her amazing run at the recent Grand Slam.
GENERAL UNFOLDING SCENARIO:
Sharapova may very well win this match, but one thing that always makes me hesitant in backing her is her serve. Simply put, the Russian has a rather unpredictable serve which may easily crack against a decent returner like Pennetta. With the Italian putting up a solid performance in beating Aga Radwanska in her previous match, I am counting on her to keep up that momentum today.
Personally, I do feel Pennetta has a decent chance to beat Sharapova today.
I am predicting a good start for the Italian Pennetta here.
As per the tip, stake 2% at the start by laying Maria @1.35 and backing her @1.75. While the odds on Sharapova has a chance to hit a price of 2.00 early on, I feel 1.7 – 1.8 is the safer zone, so stick to that range.
Delaying the trade to fetch better Lay prices on Maria is not recommended. If Flavia starts serving well enough, there is a chance she could run away with the first set.
If our target is hit, your potential profit is close to 65% of the stake.
Worst case scenario:
One cannot be 100% sure about which Maria turns up on the day. If she plays as well as she did against Halep, she is good enough to win this match in 2 sets. Assuming she starts great, I advise investing your remaining 1% at odds of 7 on Pennetta.
Even if she is down a break, Pennetta is good enough to make a comeback and win this match in 2 sets, just as Radwanska found out.
Once you have traded out with a profit, I do not recommend re-investing if the match goes to a deciding set as it could be a very fluctuating affair, even though, I can see a possible win for Pennetta.
As always, any profits close to 20-25% is always good to trade out!
As predicted Pennetta started strongly here with a break in the very first game. She continued that momentum by having more opportunities to double break. At this point odds on Sharapova went above 2 which made our strategy successful without many issues.
Later on, the Italian’s serve faded into oblivion as Sharapova gained more confidence and rallied back to win the first set 7-5 and breezed through the 2nd set.
Price movement on Maria can be seen below: