We are into Day Three of this week’s WTA tournaments. Some of the game’s top players are playing in Asia this week to get some ranking points, but it is by no means an important tournament for most of the players. The third slate of this tennis DFS week has 12 matches with WTA players in action.
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Magda Linette (DraftKings $10,700; FanDuel N/A)
I don’t know what’s gotten into Magda Linette, but she is playing some outstanding tennis. Linette is 9-1 in her last 10 matches, including four wins over top 50 players. She captured a title in New York a few weeks ago, and her lone loss on this run was against the WTA world number one, Naomi Osaka. She is in incredible form at the moment, and I think she can take down another title this week.
Linette has a second round meeting with Fangzhou Liu, the WTA world number 263 from China. Liu is 26-22 on the hard courts in 2019, but 0-3 against players ranked inside the top 200. She is 1-2 in WTA tour level matches, with the one win coming yesterday. Liu faced nine break points in that match against the world number 355 Anna Danilina, and she’ll have to play out of her mind to keep up with Linette. I expect Magda to end this match quickly and easily, which may be worth paying up for.
Zarina Diyas (DraftKings $9,300; FanDuel N/A)
Zarina Diyas has been one of the more consistent hard court players on the WTA tour in 2019, with a 23-14 record on the year. She has struggled a bit against top 100 players, but Diyas has found her form recently as she’s 4-2 in her last six matches. The world number 80 was outstanding in her first match this week, with a 6-2 6-2 win over Danka Kovinic. Diyas won 85% of first serve points in that match while facing just one break point.
Zarina will go up against Nao Hibino, the WTA world number 146 from Japan. Hibino has been mediocre on the hard surfaces in 2019, with an 18-16 record. However, she has struggled against the games top players. Hibino is 21-66 against top 100 players in her career, with 49 losses coming on the hard courts. These two have faced each other once with Diyas coming out on top 6-2 6-1. Diyas is playing some great tennis at the moment, and this price is a bit low given her -300 line to win.
Karolina Pliskova (DraftKings $9,000; FanDuel N/A)
This price is outrageous for Karolina Pliskova, as she is a -400 favorite to win this match. There is no doubt that she is going to be the chalk play of the slate, but you can’t pass up on it. Pliskova, the world number two, has been one of the best hard court players over the last 12 months. She is 40-14 during that span while reaching five finals. Only two of those 14 losses were against players ranked outside the top 30, which shows just how dominant she is.
Pliskova will go up against Polona Hercog, the WTA world number 53. Hercog has not had a great time on the hard courts, with a 10-13 record in 2019. Before this tournament, she was riding a three match loss streak and almost made it to four. Hercog struggled to take down the world number 762 Meiling Wang, as she saved five out of the six breaks she faced. She is 0-7 against top 50 players on the hard courts this year, and I do not see her getting that first win today. Pliskova should cruise, at a very cheap price.
Possible upset/value plays: Kristina Mladenovic (DraftKings $7,300; FanDuel N/A)
The hard courts haven’t treated Kristina Mladenovic well since the end of Wimbledon, as she is just 4-4. Three of her wins were against players ranked outside the top 200, so she’ll need a big win to get some confidence back. Mladenovic cruised in her first match this week, with a 6-2 6-3 win over Duan Yingying. She won 82% of service points while facing zero break points, and I hope she brings that kind of game into her next match.
Kristina has a second round meeting with Caroline Garcia, the WTA world number 31 from France. Garcia has shown signs of struggles on the hard courts, as she was riding a four loss match streak before this tournament. She barely managed to escape against the world number 138 Tereza Martincova in three sets, 6-4 4-6 7-5. Garcia faced nine break points while losing three in an almost three hour long match. These two have played each other twice, with Mladenovic winning their most recent match 6-1 6-2 on a clay court. I don’t have much confidence in either player, but Kristina is a good cheap option.
Best of luck!