Wimbledon 2017: Women's Preview

Outright women's betting preview for Wimbeldon 2017We preview the women's segment of Wimbledon 2017. 
It’s hard to argue that the women’s draw has not lost some of its pixie-dust this year without the dual presence of Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova. The absence of Williams, in particular, makes the regular task of prediction a far more speculative act this year; such has been her dominance of late.

The likes of top two seeds Angelique Kerber and Simona Halep do little to instil a great deal of confidence in respecting those seeds. Every slam needs a Rocky narrative, and few come as captivating as the revival of two-time champion Petra Kvitova. Still fully recovering from a gruesome stabbing that threatened to end her career, the serene left-hander brings form into this event to complement the Cinderella story.

Wimbledon | Monday 3 July to Sunday 16 July | The All England Club

To Win Outright
Karolina Pliskova 9/2 | Petra Kvitova 9/1 | Johanna Konta 9/1 | Garbine Muguruza 12/1 | Venus Williams 12/1 | Angelique Kerber 14/1 | Jelena Ost

The Favourites

The absence of Serena due to the birth of her child was known for quite some time. Maria Sharapova was expected to be the major draw-card following her return from a 15-month doping violation- setting up a potentially mouth-watering encounter with her greatest critic: Eugenie Bouchard. But she is set to miss out on the rest of the grass court season, greatly reducing the pedigree of the draw.

Angelique Kerber leads the seedings. A multiple Grand Slam winner, she also reached last year’s final before being soundly beaten by Serena Williams. But her recent form is of concern, particularly the fact that she became the first top ranked woman in Open Era history to be knocked out of the French Open in the first round. Her loss to Konta at Eastbourne a day ago makes her chances seem even more unlikely.

Number two seed Simona Halep is also a bit of a head-scratcher. She made her first semi-final appearance at the All-England courts in 2014, before reaching the quarter-finals last season. She clearly has the propensity to do well on grass. But there is a distinct lack of killer edge that plagues the Romanian. She has admitted openly that she has battled to overcome the trauma of losing the French Open Final to Ostepenko so agonisingly. I just don’t think that she possesses the mental powers to grind through the harder patches. Another yo-yo defeat to Caroline Wozniacki at Eastbourne is concerning. Third seed Karolina Pliskova looks far more interesting.

The Czech has a bullet serve that registered more aces on the WTA last season than any other player: 530. Her thunderous ground strokes could dismantle anyone. Though she hasn’t got past the second round here in five previous attempts, she brings real Grand Slam form to Wimbledon this year. She reached the final of the US Open last season, beating Serena along the way. She managed the quarters in Melbourne before a run to the semis in Roland Garros, before losing to Simona Halep.  f she can keep her unforced error rate down, watch this space. But Petra Kvitova looks set to be the favourite.

A two-time winner here, Kvitova has the serve and ground strokes to dominate again. Her victory at Birmingham signifies that she could be the one best poised to exploit Serena’s absence. But how will the hand hold up to the rigours of a Grand Slam?

The Ones to Watch
*() Denotes Seeding

Johanna Konta (6)
The Brit is one of the form players going into the event and represents the hopes of an entire nation. She was upset in the Aegon Final in Nottingham by Donna Vekic, but I wouldn’t read too much into that. She won the prestigious Miami Open earlier this season, breaking a huge barren spell for British woman in Masters Series events. She blitzed Caroline Wozniacki en route to victory there. She also managed to make the semi-finals of the Aussie open last season, indicating that she has the potential to make a decent run of it this Wimbledon.

Coco Vandeweghe (24)
Apart from possessing the coolest name in world tennis, Vandeweghe possesses just the kind of mercurial power-based game that could make her dangerous at this event. In many ways similar to compatriot Madison Keys, with devastating ground strokes that could be amplified by the slicker terrain of Wimbledon. She reached the quarter-finals here last season and reached the final four at the Australian Open, beating Kerber and Muguruza en route. She is a prototypical giant-killer but will need to nurse a slight injury sustained in Birmingham.

Our Scribe's Predictions

Likely Winner: Karolina Pliskova

Biggest Disappointments: Simona Halep and Angelique Kerber

Ones to Watch: Coco Vandewege and Johanna Konta

Written by Damien Kayat for @Hollywoodbets.net

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