Rome hosts one of the most important events on WTA Tour with the best players in the world fighting for 900 points. Join us while we analyze the main contenders, and the most valuable tennis picks.
Serena Williams returns to competition after withdrawing from Madrid because of flu. It hasn’t been an easy year for the American, losing the two finals she played against Angelique Kerber at the Australian Open and Victoria Azarenka in Indian Wells. Even though this is Serena’s first tournament on clay since the French Open last year, the American can never be underestimated and she’s always a serious contender for the title. Williams is looking for her third career title on this event and she shouldn’t experience many problems on her first two matches, with Ana Ivanovic as the toughest player that Serena might face yet, the Serbian is far from her best. At the quarterfinals, Serena might face Simona Halep, who arrives in Rome after a superb week in Madrid, where she won her first title in 2016. Halep is never an easy opponent to face but like it happened in 7 of their previous 8 meetings, Serena should emerge victorious and book a place in the semifinals.
Once again, Victoria Azarenka’s body betrayed her with the Belarussian withdrawing from her 3rd round match in Madrid against Louisa Chirico due to a back injury. Azarenka said that her main priority for 2016 was to stay healthy and this was her second retirement of the season after withdrawing earlier this year in Acapulco. If Victoria shows up at good level it should be an easy path for her into the semifinals, with Lucie Safarova, Roberta Vinci and Karolina Pliskova as the toughest players she might face until that stage. However, with the French Open around the corner it wouldn’t be surprising to see Azarenka withdrawing once again, since a back injury is always a serious issue.
Both players are on top half of the draw and they might face on an epic semifinal but as we mentioned, is hard for us to trust on Azarenka to present her best level on this event and for that reason, we believe there is good value on Serena’s tennis odds to capture this title at +275 on Bet365.
Player to Keep an Eye on
After a disappointing early loss in Madrid against her fellow countrywoman, Camila Giorgi, Sara Errani is looking for another good week in Rome. However, that match was a terrible match-up for Sara since she was facing an extremely powerful player in fast conditions, the worst combination for her. The conditions in Rome are much slower and the Italian loves to compete on this event, with her best result achieved in 2014 when she reached the final. Sara starts her campaign against the qualifier Heather Watson, a very good player on Hard Court but far from being an expert on clay and that should be fatal against Errani. On the following round she might face Barbora Strycova, the two faced earlier this year in Dubai’s final with Errani destroying her opponent by 6 – 0 6 – 2 and once again, the Italian should emerge victorious. On the following three rounds, Errani can face three top 10 players: Angelique Kerber, Petra Kvitova and Garbine Muguruza. All of them are tremendous players and it won’t be easy for Errani to defeat them but with the home support and playing on her favorite surface, Sara might feature another remarkable week and her odds at +5000 on bet365 seem an interesting bet to add to your tennis picks for a trade on latter stages of the competition.