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Thursday US Open Analysis & Betting Predictions: Fruhvirtova Will Challenge Muguruza (September 1)

Thursday US Open Analysis & Betting Predictions: Fruhvirtova Will Challenge Muguruza (September 1) article feature image

Sarah Stier/Getty. Pictured: Linda Fruhvirtova.

  • Youngster Linda Fruhvirtova takes on ex-Grand Slam champion Garbine Muguruza in Round 2.
  • See why David Gertler is expecting youth to push experience.
  • Read on for his preview and analysis.

It's been an incredible start to the US Open and the action continues on Thursday.

I've found betting value on two of Thursday's matches, including a battle of youth and experience.

Read on for my best bets and previews.

Note: Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing US Open matches.

Garbine Muguruza (-184) vs. Linda Fruhvirtova (+152)

2:15 p.m. ET

Garbine Muguruza started strong and then held on to defeat Clara Tauson 6-3, 7-6(5). Muguruza won 68% of her service points, hit 10 aces and was only broken once in the straight-sets victory.

She also did a good job of attacking Tauson's second serve, winning 52% of her second-serve return points. Muguruza is now 2-2 during the summer hard-court season and 7-7 overall on hard courts this year.

Linda Fruhvirtova qualified for the US Open and beat Xinyu Wang 6-3, 6-4 to advance to the second round. Fruhvirtova won 69% of her first-serve points, but she really made her impact on return. The Czech won 54% of her return points, including 64% on Wang's second serve. This allowed her to break five times.

Fruhvirtova is now 13-4 on hard courts this season and, impressively, 40-14 as a professional on hard. Fruhvirtova has a well-balanced game. She is fast, consistent and can counterpunch effectively. At the same time, the Czech is also consistent and a clean a ball striker.

She can take advantage of Muguruza's weaknesses better than Tauson. Fruhvirtova is less erratic and a better defender than Tauson was.

The youngster will be able to make Muguruza work harder from the baseline and not get bailed out by 46 unforced errors, like she did against Tauson. Against Wang, Fruhvirtova only hit 15 unforced errors.

Having been through qualifying, Fruhvirtova is well-adjusted in the hot and humid New York conditions. Whereas, versus Tauston, Muguruza was starting to fade and was fortunate to win that match in straight sets.

Pick: Fruhvirtova +3.5 Games (-132 via FanDuel)

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Danielle Collins (-280) vs. Cristina Bucsa (+225)

7 p.m. ET

Danielle Collins shook off rust quickly against Naomi Osaka, winning 7-6(5), 6-3. Collins won 74% of her first-serve points and was broken twice during the match.

She attacked Osaka's second serve, winning 77% of her second-serve return points. Overall, Collins hit 23 winners compared to 24 unforced errors.

Collins, an Australian Open finalist earlier this season, had struggled with a neck issue and hadn't played since July. However, she was able to hold onto the baseline against Osaka, frequently dictating play, and not spray too many unforced errors. It's this level of controlled aggression, especially from her backhand, that has allowed Collins to go 132-79 in her career on hard courts.

Cristina Bucsa qualified for the US Open and then took down Kaja Juvan 6-4, 6-4 in the first round. Busca won 67% of her service points and only got broken once. On return, she took advantage of Juvan's weaker second serve, taking home 59% of her second-serve return points.

Bucsa hit 22 winners compared to 20 unforced errors in the match, showing once again that she can play on hard courts, where she has a 116-60 record in her career. Bucsa doesn't have any big weapons, but she moves well gets fairly good consistent depth and can hit aggressively when openings present themselves.

The Spaniard has done well to make it this far, but she hasn't played anyone with the power of Collins. The American's backhand will, by far, be the best shot on the court and she should be able to dictate play from this wing.

Collins' firepower will allow her to push Bucsa around and into more defensive positions, whereas she was able to hold onto the baseline in her first four matches. There's nothing in Bucsa's arsenal that can consistently hurt Collins.

In terms of Elo Ratings, Collins' overall Elo is 310 points higher than Bucsa's and her hard-court Elo is 333.9 points higher than the Spaniard's.

Pick: Collins to win 2-0 (-105 via FanDuel)

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