WTA Palermo Ladies Open Day 6 Tips: Giorgi capable of surprising Ferro

We have semi-final action this afternoon at WTA Palermo, and with two competitive matches in prospect, our tennis columnist, Dan Weston, returns with his thoughts...

Martic helps us pick up a winner on day five

Friday's quarter-finals yielded us a decent winner with Petra Martic getting the better of Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the opening match on the card. In truth, it was a bit fortunate with Martic edging two tiebreaks to win in straight sets, and managed to save seven of the 11 break points she faced - Martic actually earned four less break point chances than Sasnovich.

Martic a similar price against better opposition today

However, after a ridiculous match on Monday which saw our pick, Sorana Cirstea, lose despite creating 21 break points against Sara Errani, we will take some positive variance and the absurdity of Martic's market price against Sasnovich is aptly illustrated by her line today against an upgrade in opposition, in Anett Kontaveit.

Kontaveit got past Elisabeta Cocciaretto in three sets, dominating in two of those, and my model agreed with the market in the upcoming semi-final - Martic at 1.69 looks about right. Yet, Martic was a similar price yesterday against Sasnovich, probably because the market over-reacted about Sasnovich winning her first two matches with ease, and this suitably demonstrates the dangers involved in over-reacting to several seemingly impressive victories but without the player possessing stronger medium or long-term data.

Giorgi capable of causing an upset over Ferro

One player who has performed well this week is Camila Giorgi, and as mentioned throughout the week, it's been difficult to assess the likely level of her in this event due to her not having played on clay since May 2018, prior to participating here.

Giorgi has performed strongly to make it through to this stage, and has been pushed in her matches so far, with a tight two-setter and two three-setters, for both of which she's needed to recover from losing the first set. Today she faces Fiona Ferro, whose impressive general level on clay has seen her record three straight-set victories and also accumulate stellar return data this week in Palermo.

Ferro's numbers this week are more impressive than Giorgi's, but so they should be. Ferro has faced two opponents ranked outside the top 150 plus a top 30 player who is much better in quicker conditions - her path to this stage has been kind to her. Conversely, Giorgi was pre-match underdog in two matches and beaten three strong players on the surface.

Looking at three-year clay data for Giorgi and comparing it to more relevant time-frame numbers for Ferro (2019+), the 2.32 on the Italian looks to be some value. However, it does come with the obvious caveat that we are relying on longer-term numbers here, plus also she's recorded quite a bit more time on court than Ferro this week so far. I'd recommend that anyone getting involved keeps it down to a pretty small stake.

Italian Tennis Player Camila Giorgi

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