We turned a nice profit Monday, but I should’ve steered clear of Maria Sakkari as a favorite. The Greek excels as an underdog because of her defense, but she sprays the ball too often to trust as chalk at this point in her career. I will learn.
It’s a relatively small slate today, but I do see some value on the card. Let’s look at each of the five matches Tuesday to see if we can have another positive day to increase the U.S. Open bankroll.
>> Sign up for The Action Network’s daily newsletter to get the smartest conversation delivered into your inbox each morning.
Anett Kontaveit (-145) vs. Kiki Bertens (+125)
Time: Noon ET
H2H: Bertens leads 2-1 (1-1 on hard courts)
Bertens, last week’s surprise champ, returns to action with just one day of rest after a career-best title. She has never displayed the hard-court form and confidence she has shown this year. Her coach, Raemon Sluiter, deserves a ton of credit — and a nice raise this offseason.
This is a rematch of Bertens’ competitive three-set win (over two days) against Kontaveit last week in Cincinnati. Both players served well in that match, but Bertens ultimately grinded out a win with superior defense in the third set. This early match will be a tough test for her on short rest after her Cincy win.
I was looking to fade Bertens after her title (with the last major of the year on the horizon), but this line is super sharp. I would only jump on Kontaveit if the moneyline drops to -120 or below.
Camila Giorgi (-150) vs. Belinda Bencic (+130)
Time: 1:15 p.m. ET
H2H: Tied 1-1 (Giorgi leads 1-0 on hard courts)
Bencic enters as a “lucky loser” after No. 1 seed Simona Halep smartly withdrew a week ahead of the U.S. Open. The Swiss will face Giorgi, who easily defeated Ana Bogdan on Monday by dictating play with her relentless aggression and dominant first serve.
I had high summer hopes for Bencic after her promising run at Wimbledon (where she lost to eventual champion Angelique Kerber in two hard-fought sets), but she’s suffered back-to-back disappointing three-set defeats to Andrea Petkovic and Christina McHale in her past two tourney appearances. Those struggles also continued this week in qualifying, as she needed three sets to get by Kurumi Nara and Whitney Osuigwe before losing in straight sets to Dayana Yastremska.
The key to this match is Giorgi’s ability to attack Bencic’s weak and susceptible second serve. Giorgi did exactly that against Bogdan’s equally weak serve, winning 14 of 20 second-serve points. I expect more of the same Tuesday from the Italian, who should have the match on her racket.
Johanna Konta (-250) vs. Carla Suarez Navarro (+210)
Time: 2:30 p.m. ET
H2H: Konta leads 2-0 (both on hard courts)
Despite so-so summer results thus far, I think both players have played solid tennis of late and are rounding into form for the U.S. Open.
Suarez Navarro’s past two defeats came in tough matches against Victoria Azarenka and Sloane Stephens — both respectable losses. The Spaniard’s movement has looked great all summer, and she’s back to attacking angles and grinding down opponents. Her one-handed backhand has looked crisp enough to compete with top-tier players.
Konta also had a very respectable loss last week against one of the hottest players on tour in Aryna Sabalenka. As long as the Brit can find her first serve (which can abandon her at times) and continue hitting her ground strokes brilliantly, she should handle Suarez Navarro on a hard court.
Even though I think Konta advances, this line looks a tad high after seeing how well Suarez Navarro competed against Azarenka and Stephens.
Caroline Garcia (-190) vs. Aliaksandra Sasnovich (+165)
Time: 7 p.m. ET
H2H: Garcia leads 2-0 (both on hard courts)
This line looks too low. Garcia’s last two defeats came against Sabalenka in three sets last week and eventual Montreal champ Simona Halep the week before. Neither loss should induce any panic.
Yes, Sasnovich has reeled off four straight wins, but she needed three sets against Kristyna Pliskova in qualifiers and against Kristina Mladenovic on Monday. Plus, Garcia is simply a superior defender who possesses more power than the Belarusian; I make this line closer to -275.
Julia Goerges (-185) vs. Dayana Yastremska (+160)
Time: 8:30 p.m ET
H2H: First meeting
The nightcap features two of the better serves on Tour. Most tennis fans and bettors know Goerges has an enormous serve, but many might not know Yastremska can also effectively fire her serve.
Goerges retired in the first round last week with an apparent left calf injury, but that didn’t hamper her Sunday in a routine (6-3, 6-1) win over a rusty Dominika Cibulkova. The German looks fully fit once again.
Yastremska comes off a similar dominating performance against Danielle Collins on Monday. The 18-year-old Ukrainian controlled play with her big first serve, followed by her powerful forehand. In her past two matches, she has won over 75% of her first-serve points, in large part due to that one-two punch.
That could cause issues for Goerges, who recently struggled with the first serves of Mladenovic, Anastasija Sevastova and Lucie Safarova. None of those players has as strong of a first serve as Yastremska. It’s a big ask to continue winning first-serve points at a 75% clip, but the youngster can win this match at around 70%.
I don’t anticipate many breaks in a match that could see a tiebreaker or two — and potentially go the distance. Even without a third set, the Over 21 games should be well within reach with just one tiebreaker in either of the first two sets.
Tuesday Best Bets
- Giorgi -150
- Yastremska-Goerges Over 21 Games (-110)
- Garcia/Sabalenka* +135 (moneyline parlay)
*Sabalenka plays Daria Gavrilova on Wednesday