WTA Wimbledon Day Seven Tips: Watson with chance to keep British interest going
Fourth round action begins in the ladies singles at Wimbledon on day seven, and returning to preview the four matches on Sunday's schedule is Dan Weston...
Watson competing in round four for the first time
Heather Watson leads British interest on Sunday at Wimbledon, having reached round four at her home Grand Slam for the first time in her entire career. Following her win over Kaja Juvan in round three, Watson has been rewarded with a very winnable meeting with the German, Jule Niemeier, who stands in her way of a quarter-final spot next Tuesday.
The market, however, isn't particularly keen on Watson's chances, rating the Brit at 2.72 at the time of writing. Niemeier's run here has been quite surprising given that she's previously shown most ability on clay and won only one match in the grass court warm-up events, and there was very little evidence prior to this week that she was a particularly strong grass courter.
However, Niemeier appears to be on a steep upward ability curve and recently broke the top 100 for the first time, plus will obviously rise further after this tournament.
This is a fascinating match-up, given that we know plenty about Watson but very little about Niemeier on grass, but at prices I'd lean towards Watson - although it's not a strong enough lean to warrant anything further.
Jabeur's serve should be too strong for Mertens
Two of the other fourth round matches on Sunday feature heavy pre-match favourites, with Ons Jabeur - second favourite for the title - priced up at 1.23 for her meeting with Elise Mertens, while Jelena Ostapenko is similarly priced as she faces the German grass-court specialist, Tatjana Maria.
Jabeur is yet to drop a set in the tournament so far and her recent record on grass is truly exceptional, running at over 110% combined service/return points won on the surface. I think her serve should be too solid for the Belgian.
Ostapenko is a justified favourite over the German veteran, Maria, although doesn't have the advantage on serve that the similarly priced Jabeur should have. Ostapenko's game plan is likely to focus on her high quality return game, and the Latvian has broken opposition an incredible 46% on grass in the last two years.
Market cannot split Bouzkova and Garcia
The final match on Sunday should, in theory, be much closer. Marie Bouzkova and the winner of Bad Homburg, Caroline Garcia, cannot be split at the time of writing, with both 1.99 on the Exchange.
Garcia has now won eight in a row on grass but a number of those were long matches, and she's now played eight matches (including four tight three-setters) in around a week and a half. That, and some injury doubts, plus potentially Bouzkova's impressive win over Alison Riske on Friday, probably point to why she's not favourite over Bouzkova here.
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