I will keep this one to 1 unit, with Maria Sakkari presenting as a touch of value at the game handicap.
Of all the match-ups faced by Sofia Kenin across the course of this week, this one with Sakkari is far and away the worst of the bunch. It has been noticeable from Sakkari, both on court and in her comments off court, that she is looking to be far more aggressive with her overall game this year. Given the margin she is able to play with for her size and her movement, she becomes an incredibly tough out in these conditions in Paris. Her response after dropping the second set to Mertens in round 3 was exceptional, and showed the type of maturity I want to see in the game of Sakkari at this stage of a grand slam.
The serve stats for these too are far more different than you would originally expect. In their previous round, Sakkari’s top speed for the match was 32km/h faster than Kenin, and her average first serve speed was 18km/h faster. It is giving Sakkari the chance to gain some cheaper points on serve than recent years, the crucial next step in taking her game to the next level.
Whilst Kenin was able to capitalise on errors from the racquets of Ostapenko, Baptiste and Pegula (106 unforced errors across the three matches), she now faces probably her second toughest task of the clay season in Sakkari. I have backed Kenin in a couple of times this week when I have felt the match-up is a little more suited to her, however I don’t have that occuring today. I will be taking Sakkari at the game handicap for 1 unit.
1 unit Sakkari -3 games vs Kenin at $1.81 at Topsport
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