5 French Open WTA Underdogs Worth a Wager on Monday: Wozniacki Looks Vulnerable

5 French Open WTA Underdogs Worth a Wager on Monday: Wozniacki Looks Vulnerable article feature image
Credit:

Pierre Lahalle/Presse Sports via USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Caroline Wozniacki

  • French Open first-round WTA betting action will continue on Monday in Paris.
  • We take a look at five underdogs on the women's side worth a potential wager.

We got things off on the right foot in the French Open first round with a 2-0 start on Sunday. It’s always nice to start off a Slam with a profitable betting day, but we still have a long way to go.

Looking ahead to Monday, five underdogs have caught my eye on the women’s side. I think we could see a few more seeds drop — something we saw right off the bat when Angie Kerber went down.

Let’s dig in.

Veronika Kudermetova (+158) vs. Caroline Wozniacki

First up on Centre Court on Monday is my favorite play of the first round.

It’s impossible to trust Wozniacki right now. Her knee tendinitis has clearly hampered her performance, and she can barely complete matches. The Dane has also struggled with a lower back injury in recent months. Obviously, Wozniacki is a class player and even made the Charleston final in April. She will bring everything to the French Open, but fitness is a major question mark.

Kudermetova performs well on clay and has wins over some big-name opponents on this surface; Maria Sakkari in Istanbul fits that mold. The Russian has the power to hit the ball through the court, which will be key if Woz is on her game.

The issue with Kudermetova is her serve. If she can get 60% of her first serves in, I feel very confident she will advance. That might be easier said than done with her, but she’s still worth a wager.

I have Kudermetova as a +115 underdog, so I like the value at +158.

Kaia Kanepi (+115) vs. Julia Goerges

Goerges has been a mess since winning Auckland to start her 2019 campaign. She hasn’t won more than two matches in any single tournament and is only 1-4 on clay in 2019.

After a dominant serving year in 2018, her first serve has completely abandoned her this season. Historically one of the top servers in the game, Goerges has won more than 70% of her first serve points only five times since that win in Auckland.

Julia also suffered a right thigh injury in Rome that forced her to retire in the third set.

Kanepi isn’t always the most fit player, either, but she tends to show up in Grand Slams. I believe this is a true 50/50 match, so I see value at plus money with the Estonian.

Photo credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Kaia Kanepi

Antonia Lottner (+405) vs. Johanna Konta

This might be too much of a reach — especially considering Konta is an impressive 10-3 on clay this season, including a title in Rabat.

However, Konta has never won a match in Paris. She is 0-4 lifetime at the French Open main draw, and clay has never really been her strong suit.

On the other hand, Lottner’s preferred surface is clay, and she looked very impressive in winning all three qualifying matches in straight sets. The German also has impressive wins on clay, including one over the in-form Belinda Bencic in Lugano earlier this year.

Lottner at +405 is simply too high; I make her closer to +275. Konta is obviously in career form on clay, but that can come crashing down at a moment’s notice. Those French Open demons might be hard for the Brit to shake.


Aliona Bolsova Zadoinov (+117) vs. Vera Zvonareva

Bolsova has been a solid clay court player throughout her ITF run in trying to make it on the WTA Tour. She’s a consistent performer on the red dirt and receives a winnable first-round match.

Clay has never been Zvonareva’s cup of tea. This is her first French Open appearance since 2011. She’s 4-5 on clay this year, with OK wins over Anastasia Potapova and Tatjana Maria.

This will be a grinding match and is a true coin flip in my book. Getting the extra 17 cents is solid value with Bolsova, who should come into the main draw with confidence after an impressive showing in qualifying.


Tamara Zidansek (+205) vs. Elise Mertens

Zidansek thrives on clay, as seen by her appearance in a final just a few days ago in Nuremberg. She comes into Roland Garros in solid form.

Mertens excels on all surfaces; however, her form is very suspect right now. Perhaps she’s been prepping for Roland Garros all along, but her loss to Anna Karolina Schmiedlova in Madrid was very worrisome. Since winning Doha in February, Mertens holds a very poor 3-6 record as a favorite on Tour.

Zidansek has the clay court game to frustrate Mertens. Fatigue is obviously an issue considering Zidansek played on Saturday, but I think she should be fine in her first match in Paris. I have Zidansek closer to a +140 underdog, but maybe I am overrating Mertens’ recent form. Still too much value to pass up on.