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Australian Open Women's Day Four Tips: High potential Tauson can compete with Kontaveit

Having got his women’s singles account up and running yesterday with an underdog winner, Dan Weston returns to discuss the remaining round two matches, which take place on Thursday…

“Perhaps the market is being defensive on Tauson following her retirement in Melbourne a few weeks ago but she despatched Astra Sharma with fairly minimal fuss in round one here.”

Anisimova gets us a Wednesday winner

Amanda Anisimova got us a nice underdog winner on Wednesday with a straight-set win over Belinda Bencic, so we can take some form into Thursday’s schedule which features 16 second round clashes in Melbourne. As with the men’s tournament, there haven’t really been many huge-priced shocks, and after easy wins on Wednesday, Ash Barty and Naomi Osaka continue apace to their probable fourth round meeting – which will easily be the match of the tournament so far.

Raducanu among strong favourites on day four

British interest is in both Heather Watson, who faces Tamara Zidansek, and of course Emma Raducanu, who is a 1.211/5 favourite to get past Danka Kovinic. While Raducanu’s level this year has been pretty inconsistent, I’d anticipate she’d have to be pretty poor not to get past Kovinic tomorrow.

Our outright, Iga Swiatek, is among many players who are short-priced to continue their tournament, with Simona Halep, Garbine Muguruza, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Aryna Sabalenka all very strong pre-match favourites as well for their second round matches.

Tauson surprisingly priced for Kontaveit clash

Another short-priced favourite is Annette Kontaveit, who faces perhaps the most likely young player to make a big breakthrough on the WTA Tour, Clara Tauson.

The Dane, Tauson, is on the verge of the top 40 having recently turned 19 years of age, and I’m very surprised to see the market so in favour of Kontaveit here.

On hard courts on the WTA main Tour in the last 12 months, the duo actually have pretty similar data (albeit from a smaller sample size for Tauson), but that sample size issue is somewhat negated by Tauson also having stratospheric ITF level numbers too – she looks like having gigantic future potential.

Perhaps the market is being defensive on Tauson following her retirement in Melbourne a few weeks ago but she despatched Astra Sharma with fairly minimal fuss in round one here. Market lines are still settling on the game handicap market but I’d expect to be able to get around 1.654/6 on Tauson +5.5 games, a little higher than is currently available on the Exchange.

Bouzkova capable of defeating Kanepi

In other matches, I’d expect Marketa Vondrousova to have too much for Ludmilla Samsonova at 1.511/2, with there being quite a big gap in their return points won figures, while it will be interesting to see if the veteran, Kaia Kanepi, can back up her win over Angelique Kerber against Marie Bouzková.

The Czech, Bouzkova, has decent numbers on hard court in main tour matches and has actually won a higher percentage of service and return points on the surface in the last 12 months than Kanepi, so Bouzkova at 2.226/5 is perhaps another underdog to keep an eye on. She easily got the better of Rebecca Marino in round one and I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Bouzkova progressed to round three from this match.

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Follow Dan on Twitter @TennisRatings

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Anett Kontaveit
Clara Tauson

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