Tennis has been back for a few weeks now as most players have been warming up for this year’s Australian Open, which means we finally get some bigger tennis DFS contests on DraftKings. A lot has been made of Novak Djokovic and his visa issues, so it is great to actually have on-court action with plenty of top-end talent, including No. 2 seed Daniil Medvedev on today’s slate. Making a lineup with six winners can be extremely difficult with so many matches. Awesemo’s industry-leading projections will help simplify that process while giving a statistical breakdown of each player along with their odds. Day 1 is in the books, so let’s find some optimal plays for Day 2 in Australia.
DraftKings Fantasy Tennis DFS Picks Today
Top Pick: John Isner ($7,100)
Opponent: Maxime Cressy
John Isner is often a favorite in tennis DFS with his extraordinary service game that has carried him his entire career — 18.51 aces per match. His price and odds are a bit off-putting but bear some weight, as Isner has just one win in his first four matches this year, even on his preferred surface. Thankfully for Isner, he is matched up with an extremely similar American player, Maxime Cressy, who also heavily relies on power and his service game to compete — 16.1 aces per match for career. The elder Isner carries a much more polished game of the two, so on points that go beyond the serve he should be able to maintain control.
Ownership will be interesting to see here as Isner could be extremely popular, which would make Cressy a very attractive option in larger-field GPPs. But if picking a winner and a better floor play/value in all formats it is unquestionably Isner.
Top Pick: Angelique Kerber ($8,700)
Opponent: Kaia Kanepi
After a horrendous 2020 many thought the end was near for Angelique Kerber, but she came back very strong in 2021, going 29-15 overall (14-8 on hardcourts), winning one title and reaching the quarterfinals on four separate occasions. As two veterans on the WTA, Kerber and Kaia Kanepi have met four times in total, with Kerber taking each of the last two on hardcourts. That is a bit of surprise considering their styles but speaks to Kerber’s better overall game and mobility.
The layoff for Kerber is obviously of some concern, as rust will certainly be an issue, but thankfully for her she got about as good of a matchup as one can ask for. Kanepi is not a mobile player by any means and relies much on power, which, at age 36, has begun to fade as well. The mid-range is a great place to find low-owned leverage spots on these giant slates, which is the main driving force in this pick.
Fade: Leylah Fernandez ($11,100)
Like many WTA younger players, Leylah Fernandez struggles with consistency especially with the service game. At her elevated tag, there are plenty of surrounding options with more upside, such as Simona Halep at just $100 more.
Upset Pick: Alex Bolt ($4,900)
Opponent: Alejandro Davidovich Fokina
Australia native Alex Bolt faces off against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in a match that could be tight considering the styles and form. Bolt (ranked 152nd) is by no means a household name but has at least done well enough here in his home country the last three years to make it past the first round. Fokina, on the other hand, did not participate last year in Australia, and also struggled on hardcourts going just 4-6 in 10 matches.
The key to this match will be Bolt getting up early, as Fokina is very emotional and does not possess a game built for hardcourts; he will occasionally use underhand serves. There is no reason to go crazy with Bolt here at $4,900, as he just will not be necessary on a slate this size, but sprinkling him in to change lineup construction with two big favorites works for the portfolio.
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