WTA Rome Odds, Picks | Expert Betting Predictions For Zanevska vs Strycova, Sherif vs Blinkova (May 9)

WTA Rome Odds, Picks | Expert Betting Predictions For Zanevska vs Strycova, Sherif vs Blinkova (May 9) article feature image

Robert Prange/Getty. Pictured: Mayar Sherif.

WTA Rome is here and the level of tennis should be through the roof!

I’ve found value on two of Tuesday's matchups — Zanevska vs Strycova and Sherif vs Blinkova.

Read on for my WTA Rome picks and predictions.

Note: Match times are subject to change. Read here for tips on viewing tennis matches and seeing tennis odds.

WTA Rome Odds, Picks

Maryna Zanevska (-380) vs Barbora Strycova (+280)

5 a.m. ET

Maryna Zanevska played last week in Saint Malo, where she fell 6-2, 4-6, 5-7 to Katie Volynets in the second round. Zanevska won just 54% of her return points and was broken six times. The Belgian did win 45% of her return points, including 57% on Volynets' second serve.

Zanevska is a strong clay courter, with a 223-124 career-record on the dirt. The Belgian's game is centered around her heavy forehand that dictates play. Zanevska controls the baseline from this wing, hitting with pace into precise locations on the court. Her backhand is shakier, but it can be a weapon at times. Zanevska anticipates her opponents' shots well and understands clay-court point construction.

Barbora Strycova returned from maternity leave in Madrid, losing 3-6, 6-7(5) to Elisabetta Cocciaretto. Strycova won just 53% of her service points, facing 13 break points and getting broken on four occasions. However, the Czech was able to win 52% of her second-serve returns and broke twice.

It was a decent first-match back from Strycova, who found some extra offense in the Madrid altitude. Strycova has a 195-138 record on clay as a professional, showing that she can play on the dirt. The Czech is a crafty player, utilizing her variety and ability to spread the court to keep her opponents uncomfortable. Strycova, a doubles Slam champion, is also strong at the net.

But Rome is a different ball game, as it's much slower than Madrid and requires greater physicality. And, with so much time off of the tour, it should be difficult for Strycova to match the physicality needed to win on the surface.

Strycova should struggle to finish off points or find avenues to venture into the net, with her rally tolerance and controlled aggression under scrutiny in just her second match back.

Zanevska is a veteran who understands clay-court tennis. The Belgian should control the baseline, dragging Strycova around with her heavy forehand and showing the patience to grind down the vulnerable Czech.

Pick: Strycova to NOT win a set (-120 via PointsBet)

Mayar Sherif (-225) vs Anna Blinkova (+178)

5 a.m. ET

Mayar Sherif made the quarterfinals of Madrid, but fell 6-2, 2-6, 1-6 to eventual champion Aryna Sabalenka. Sherif won just 50% of her service points and was broken six times. But, the Egyptian did win 44% of her return points, including 59% on Sabalenka's second serve, breaking on four occasions.

Sherif has gone an incredible 157-50 on clay for her career. The Egyptian understands point construction on clay, building points behind her heavy, well-placed forehand. She anticipates well and it's hard to push her off the baseline. Sherif keeps her opponents out of their comfort zones with her variety and displays consistent depth. She is 33-8 across the past two seasons on clay for a reason.

Anna Blinkova played in last week's Reus Challenger, losing 4-6, 5-7 to Dayana Yastremska in the second round. Blinkova won just 50% of her service points and was broken six times. On return, the Russian won 74% of second-serve returns and broke four times, but only won 41% of her overall return points.

Blinkova has a solid 60-46 clay-record as a professional. The Russian moves well and defends fairly effectively. However, Blinkova wants to be the one in charge of rallies and playing offense and has struggled to execute in 2023. Blinkova has failed to win consecutive matches since Hobart in January, lacking the rally tolerance and controlled aggression which saw her rise 75 ranking spots over the course of last season.

She has struggled to balance offense and defense this season, executing neither with much success. Now she's taking on an in-form clay courter in Sherif who just defeated Caroline Garcia and got a set from Sabalenka in Madrid.

Sherif's court positioning is a strength and she should be the one dictating with her forehand from the baseline. The Egyptian's weight of shot and placement should keep Blinkova on the defensive. Blinkova will likely look to press on her groundstrokes to regain the upper hand in rallies with little success.

Finally, when looking at Elo ratings, Sherif's overall Elo is 89.4 points higher than Blinkova's, but her clay-court Elo is an even more impressive 215.9 points above the Russian's.

Pick: Sherif -3.5 games (-118 via FanDuel)

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