Sydney is the last stop for many players before the Australian Open. Find out who are the main favorites to win this event and the most valuable players to add to your tennis picks.
Top Half of the Draw
The world no.1 – Angelique Kerber – is the main favorite to lift the trophy in Sydney at +400 at BetVictor. Despite Angelique's success in 2016, it won't be easy for the German to maintain such a high level this season. Adding to the huge pressure on Kerber to win every match, all her opponents will be extremely motivated to beat the world no.1. Kerber's defeat in the WTA Brisbane quarter-finals against Elina Svitolina is a good example of that with the Ukrainian playing at an astonishing level.
Angelique won't have an easy task with very dangerous opponents in her quarter such as Daria Kasatkina and Johanna Konta. Despite their undeniable quality, these two players are still looking for their first career victory against Kerber with the world no.1 winning all their previous encounters in straight sets. Looking now to Angelique's potential opponents in the semi-finals, Dominika Cibulkova and Svetlana Kuznetsova are the two main threats on the German's path.
After winning the WTA Singapore Finals, Cibulkova is now looking for her first Grand Slam trophy in 2017. The 2014 WTA Sydney runner-up is always fearful opponent due to her tremendous firepower; however, she's also famous for her inconsistency. Even though we have no doubts about the Slovak's ability to create problems to Kerber, it wouldn't be surprising to see Cibulkova losing in the first rounds. Due to Dominika's poor performance last week in Brisbane and the tough opponent she has in the first round – Laura Siegemund – our advice is to avoid placing any bet on Cibulkova's outright at +1200 at Bet365.
Playing in Sydney brings great memories to Kuznetsova with the defending champion featuring a remarkable run last year. The Russian starts her campaign against Irina-Camelia Begu and in the following round she'll face the winner of the match between Samantha Stosur and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. Even though these three players can perform at a very good level, it's unlikely to see them presenting the required consistency to defeat Kuznetsova. In the quarter-finals, she can face Cibulkova but as we mentioned before, it wouldn't be surprising to see Dominika losing in the first rounds.
Taking a look now at the previous meetings between Kuznetsova and Kerber, the Russian leads on the h2h by 4 – 3. Svetlana is a very tough match-up for the German and due to her past success in Sydney, there is clear value on her betting odds at +1600 at BetVictor.
Bottom Half of the Draw
The competitive level is huge in the bottom half of the draw with two top 5 players, a former world no.1 and four former top 11 players.
Karolina Pliskova and Agnieszka Radwanska are the two main favorites to reach the final but it won't be easy for any of them to reach that stage of the competition.
Despite Pliskova's recent victory in Brisbane, winning this event could compromise her chances at the Australian Open. It's not by accident that no player in tennis history won Brisbane and Sydney in the same year. For that reason, it's very hard for us to trust on Karolina to present her best tennis and proper motivation for this tournament. On the other hand, Radwanska was far from impressive on her 2017 debut in Shenzhen. The Polish lost in the quarter-finals against Alison Riske with a heavy 0 – 6 in the 3rd set.
Even though it's hard to predict which player should reach the final on this side of the draw, it's still possible to find some valuable players to bet on. The former world no.7 and 2016 WTA Sydney semifinalist – Belinda Bencic – is trying to return to her best tennis after several physical problems. The Swiss played at a good level in the Hopman Cup and this might be a very good week for her. With this in mind, we recommend you to add Belinda to your betting picks in every match until she loses, starting with the first one against Yulia Putintseva at -204 at Pinnacle.