Wimbledon Day Three Women's Tips: Pegula potential underdog value to defeat Samsonova

In theory there are 16 second round matches in the women's singles on Wednesday's schedule at Wimbledon but the rain may again have a say. Dan Weston looks at the betting...

Serena withdraws following slip on centre court

With many first-round matches still yet to be completed at SW19, it is debatable whether Wednesday's schedule will stretch to completing the first batch of second-round matches, which would comprise the bottom half of the draw. Of course, though, we must prepare for all eventualities, and with the first-round matches discussed over the last couple of days, Wednesday's preview looks at these scheduled second-round matches.

First of all though, the major talking point from Tuesday's matches in the women's singles was the withdrawal of Serena Williams who joined men's player Adrian Mannarino in having to pull out from the event after slipping on court. This has seen Ash Barty shorten to 6.2 favourite in the outright market, and the Australian is now the only player in single-digit pricing at the time of writing.

Samsonova potentially overvalued by the market

I probably sound a bit like a broken record but the lack of usable surface data is a real constraint for the grass court season, and because of that, I'd still recommend caution with regards to being overly confident on recommendations.

One player who has done well on grass this summer in a small sample is the Russian wild card Ludmilla Samsonova, who won the Berlin event as a qualifier several weeks ago, including five wins as a pre-match underdog. She beat the likes of Victoria Azarenka and Madison Keys in Germany that week (although she needed to get past two final set tiebreaks to lift the trophy) and I can't help thinking that the market is over-reacting to this for her match with Jessica Pegula.

The American 22nd seed, Pegula, easily defeated Carolina Garcia in round one and picked up a solid win over Karolina Pliskova in that Berlin event as well. On hard courts this year, Pegula has much better numbers than Samsonova, with a huge edge on return in particular, so I think that she looks some value at 2.20 to make round three.

Stephens vulnerable as a heavy favourite

Fellow American, Sloane Stephens, shocked Petra Kvitova in round one, and the market appears to think that she's back to her best after one big win. Stephens has received plenty of market love despite a real decline in recent years (I can't remember many times where my model made her pre-match value) and is just 1.18 to get the better of lucky loser Kristie Ahn.

Of course, Ahn is a downgrade in opposition from Kvitova, but Stephens has a very poor record as a solid favourite historically, and I think it would be pretty brave of anyone to back her as a heavy favourite here.

Venus Williams a heavy underdog for Jabeur clash

In other matches, Iga Swiatek faces a potentially tricky test against Vera Zvonareva, while Venus Williams shouldn't be ruled out at 7.20 for her match with Ons Jabeur. Venus hasn't impressed generally this year but did pick up a fighting three-set win on Monday, and she looks like one of the better underdog spots today.

There's also some British interest in the first batch of round two matches, with Katie Boulter a huge underdog to make round three, as she faces one of the tournament favourites, Aryna Sabalenka. The 7.40 on Boulter looks a little generous, but it would be a real surprise if British supporters were celebrating an underdog victory tonight.

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