Petkovic downed as more big names exit

We've had a disappointing start to Wimbledon so far with our underdog pick yesterday, Andrea Petkovic, being edged 7-5 by Monica Niculescu in a deciding set in what was a very competitive match, but we did see our other outright selection join her fellow two picks in round two, with Jo Konta getting past Ana Bogdan with fairly minimal drama.
However, the field was further thinned of big names following defeats for 2017 champion Garbine Muguruza and Maria Sharapova, although the likes of Petra Kvitova and Serena Williams got their campaigns off to straight-set starts against Ons Jabeur and Guilia Gatto-Monticone, respectively.

Outright picks continue their tournaments

Today sees round two get going, and there are 16 matches on what looks a pretty competitive card. Two of our outright selections, Caroline Wozniacki and Petra Martic, are in action, with Wozniacki looking defensively priced at 1.53 by the market, for her meeting with Veronika Kudermetova and I'm wondering how much her price is being influenced by Kudermetova's win in Paris just over a month ago at the French Open, which was a completely different match-up. As for Martic, she's accurately priced at 1.30 to defeat Anastasia Potapova.

Flipkens capable of underdog victory

I'm going with another underdog to try and get our tournament back to winning ways, with Kirsten Flipkens available at 3.05 to get the better of Su-Wei Hsieh. I'm surprised with this line as Flipkens has very solid grass pedigree - she reached the semi-finals here in 2013 as well as the final of Hertogenbosch last season, among other achievements - and her defeats this year on the surface are far from disasters against decent opposition.
Hsieh had a huge win here last year over Simona Halep although prior to this victory, the 28th seed had achieved little on grass throughout her career. At the age of 33, that should be a big warning sign, and if we look at the grass court numbers across the last couple of seasons, Flipkens has held much more and only broken opponents marginally less.
Given the closeness of the stats, taking Flipkens at market prices seems a pretty solid play, and she is today's recommendation.

Gauff underdog for Rybarikova clash in round two

In other matches, I feel there's a fairly similar case to be made for Yanina Wickmayer at 2.26against Shuai Zhang - the Belgian is obviously the worse player but more competent on grass.
We also see 15-year-old Cori Gauff continue after shocking Venus Williams on the opening day, although the American is a 2.50 underdog against Magdalena Rybarikova, making a mockery of Gauff's absurd price in the tournament winner market, while her countrywoman, Madison Keys, is among big names in action.
That list also includes Simona Halep, Elina Svitolina and Karolina Pliskova, while British eyes will be on Heather Watson, who is a solid underdog against Anett Kontaveit in their second round meeting.


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