WTA Dubai Tennis Picks, Predictions: Our 2 Best Bets for Brengle vs Yastremska & Giorgi vs Kvitova
Credit: Icon Sportswire, Getty. Dayana Yastremska hits a forehand at the Kremlin Cup.
The WTA Dubai draw is packed, which means that we get exciting, high-quality matches all week.
With qualifying still in progress and the main draw starting up, there are plenty of places to try to find value in Dubai.
Read on for analysis of two spots on Monday’s order of play worth thinking about.
Match times are subject to change. Read here for advice on watching tennis matches.
Madison Brengle (-108) vs Dayana Yastremska (-108)
2:00 a.m. ET, WTA Dubai Qualifying
Madison Brengle has had a solid start to the season. After a 4-3 campaign in Australia, Brengle has navigated a tricky Dubai qualifying draw without losing a set.
Brengle beat world number 40 Amanda Anisimova in straight sets to start her qualifying campaign and then only lost two games to Astra Sharma to set up this showdown with Dayana Yastremska.
Both Anisimova and Sharma won under 40% of their second-serve points, and Brengle has broken serve a combined 11 times in the two qualifying matches.
Brengle has also done a good job in both of her qualifying matches of having a high first-serve percentage, serving over 70% of first serves in play in both of her qualifying matches.
Brengle is really just interested in starting points rather than winning the points with her serve. She is so consistent from the baseline and does a great job of hitting her shots into tricky areas of the court.
Don’t be fooled by Yastremska’s ranking of world number 149; she’s a dangerous player. In Dubai qualifying so far, her game is finally clicking this season.
After easily beating Anna Danilina in the first round of qualifying, Yastemska played the match of her season to beat world number 33 Clara Tauson in three sets.
Yastremska has been extremely impressive on return so far in Dubai qualifying. Both Danilina and Tauson won 50% or fewer of their service points and were broken a combined 13 times.
Yastremska, when her baseline game is clicking, can take the racquet out of opponent’s hands with her aggressive approach to the game and power. She overpowered Danilina and Tauson, and this match with the counterpunching Brengle is certainly a huge contrast in styles.
If we look at Elo ratings, it shows just how even this matchup is. Yastremska has a slightly higher overall Elo, but Brengle’s hard-court Elo is a bit higher.
Ultimately, if Yastremska plays well, she just has too much power for the American to handle. Sure, Brengle had an impressive victory over Anisimova, but Anisimova only served 46% of her first serves into play and really struggled from the baseline. That win looks better on paper than it does in reality.
Meanwhile, Yastremska put 65% of her first serves into play against Tauson, who was one of the stories of the Australian Open and seems to finally be gaining steam after a rough start to the season.
Brengle won’t be able to make the Ukranian uncomfortable, and Yastremska should effectively dictate from the baseline with her huge game.
Yastremska deserves to be the favorite in this match.
Pick: Yastremska ML (-108 via FanDuel)
Camila Giorgi (-130) vs Petra Kvitova (+102)
11:00 a.m. ET, WTA Dubai
Camila Giorgi has been hit-and-miss so far during the 2022 season. After making the third round of the Australian Open and losing to the eventual champion Ashleigh Barty, Giorgi went out in three sets to Ekaterina Alexandrova last week in St. Petersburg.
Against Alexandrova, Giorgi only saved two of six break points and won only 28% of the return points on Alexandrova’s first serve. In addition, during the third set, Giorgi only won three of nine points on her second serve.
Giorgi’s game is all-out power, which can be very effective when she’s hitting her spots, but can be disastrous when she’s off of her game. An unforced error is certainly not a stranger to the Italian.
Another player who, at least recently, has become very familiar with unforced errors is Petra Kvitova.
After a trip to Australia which saw Kvitova go 1-3 and really struggle to control her groundstrokes, Kvitova seemed to have things figured out during a 6-2, 6-1 win over Jule Niemeier in the first round of St. Petersburg last week.
However, a disastrous 4-6, 0-6 loss to Irina-Camelia Begu in the second round seems to have put Kvitova back at square one.
In that match, Kvitova only won 49% of her service points. Furthermore, the Czech only broke serve once while getting broken five times by Begu.
Despite serving 67% of her first serves in, Kvitova only won 50% of her first-serve points. This is certainly a worrying statistic.
When looking at this match, it’s impossible trust Kvitova. She’s way too erratic, and her service numbers against Begu were worrying, showing she wasn’t getting the pop on her first serve in that match that we’re used to seeing from her.
Yes, Giorgi can be erratic, but she will also be able to rush Kvitova and not give her time to set up on her huge groundstrokes. This should make Kvitova even more uncomfortable than she already is.
Giorgi is a strong play to win this match.
Pick: Giorgi ML (-130 via PointsBet)