These two ladies are playing excellent tennis at the moment with Shuai Zhang winning 12 out of 13 matches and Sabalenka winning 8 of her last 9 (her only defeat coming to world number one, Simona Halep). The competitiveness of this contest shows in the betting and it looks like Zhang will go off slight favourite. However, we like Sabalenka to upset the odds here as she has a more complete game than the Chinese Zhang. Still only a teenager (19), Sabalenka should have an illustrious career ahead of her and she is the value pick from this match up. 11/10 is where the money lies for this one.
Normally we would side with the talented Russian Khachanov here but Cuevas’s recent form is hard to ignore. He has won six in a row – including beating Khachanov convincingly in the Paris Masters – and looks to be rejuvenated after a horrendous mid-season melt down; the poor lad went on the most spectacular losing streak, failing to win a single match from May all the way to October. Alas though, he is playing ball at the moment and with Khachanov in the doldrums (losing 6 out of 8), Cuevas looks to be cracking value to win this match. Go with the hot hand and back the Uruguayan at 6/5.
Any mug could tell you that Muguruza is clearly the more talented of the two here but having retired multiple times in her last five matches (most recently last week in Brisbane), it raises concerns as to her fitness at the moment. Bertens will take confidence into this match knowing she has beaten Muguraza in each of their three previous meetings. Kiki to win the 1st set @ 7/4 looks to be a sneaky little gem here on the premise that Muguruza starts off tentatively.
Back A Sabalenka @11/10 vs S Zhang
Back P Cuevas @6/5 vs K Khachanov
Back K Bertens To Win 1st Set @7/4 vs G Muguruza