Australian Open women’s singles round 3: Konta out for Allertova revenge
Jamie Clark, Sports Editor | January 22, 2016
2016 Australian Open
- Women’s singles round three
- Saturday, January 23rd
- Play scheduled to start: 00:00 GMT
- Melbourne Park, Melbourne
- Live on Eurosport 1 and 2
Konta out to avenge French Open loss
Great Britain women’s tennis number one Johanna Konta remains in the hunt to reach the second week of the Australian Open, but must inflict defeat on Czech Republic player Denisa Allertova in order to do so.
Although the Aussie-born British hope is Coral’s odds-on 8/15 match favourite having shocked household name Venus Williams in Melbourne, she lost the only previous meeting at another Grand Slam – the French Open last season.
That makes Allertova, who knocked out former Wimbledon finalist Sabine Lisicki to set up this encounter, attractive at 6/4 to stop Konta, and a repeat of the 2-1 Roland Garros result is a 7/2 chance.
Konta’s confidence is sky high, however, and she makes for a credible alternative to come through in three sets at 11/4. Punters will have to choose between patriotism and past history here.
Azarenka, Kerber, Muguruza should advance
Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka is rated the woman most likely to win the Slam again at 9/4, apart from defending champion Serena Williams.
A first-time encounter for Belarus’ top tennis export with Japanese teenager Naomi Osaka looks like plain sailing. Strongly odds-on at 1/20 to take her place in the last 16, Azarenka holds a huge experience edge over the plucky qualifier.
Osaka, a 9/1 match outsider, did defeat WTA world number 18 Elina Svitolina in the last round, but Azarenka looks assured of stopping her in straight sets at 1/5.
Seventh seed Angelique Kerber (1/10) has already beaten her Australian Open third round opponent, Madison Brengle (6/1), Down Under this year in Brisbane. A repeat of that 2-0 victory in Melbourne is 1/3.
World number three Garbine Muguruza (8/1 tournament chance) will be looking to go one better here than being runner-up at Wimbledon, and the rising Spanish star is odds-on at 1/6 to come through her clash with Barbora Strycova, having beaten her twice before.
Ivanovic, Makarova tipped for Keys, Pliskova clash
Serbia’s Ana Ivanovic made be seeded five spots lower than Madison Keys, but the American lost their only previous head-to-head in straight sets. That means 2008 Australian Open finalist Ivanovic is a fine 5/4 to repeat victory, and 11/4 to do so again 2-0.
Ekaterina Makarova and Karolina Pliskova are rated equal 10/11 match chances in their encounter, but siding with the Russian to win in straight sets rewards punters with a tasty 2/1 price.
Makarova beat Pliskova 2-0 at the Australian Open last year and taking the same result as this exact stage again is real value.