WTA Tour: BNP Paribas Fed Cup quarter-finals Preview

Tennis player stands with racquet in hand

We preview the BNP Paribas Fed Cup quarter finals set to get underway on Saturday 10 February. 

Seeded Sides
1. Belarus
2. USA
3. Czech Republic
4. France

Past Winners
2017: USA beat Belarus
2016: Czech Republic beat France
2015: Czech Republic beat Russia
2014: Czech Republic beat Germany
2013: Italy beat Russia


To Win
Belarus 1/5 | Germany 3/1

Chizhovka Arena | Minsk, Belarus
This will be something of an undercard battle, with various key members of both sides unavailable. I always feel it’s prudent to opt for value in those situations, despite the fact that home soil has proved so decisive in Fed Cup action. Belarus will be without both Victoria Azarenka while both Julia Goerges and Angelique Kerber will miss out for Germany, with Antonia Lottner and Tatjana Maria carrying their hopes.

Aliaksandra Sasnovich has emerged for Belarus over the last year and could be their next Azarenka. Belarus lost in the finals last year to the all-powerful United States, a result which has greatly contributed to their price. However, both Sanovich and Aryna Sabalenka have had indifferent starts to the year. While Belarus are still favorites to progress, you have to go for where the value lies. 1/5 looks pretty slim for Belarus, even if they are at home. You have to go for Germany at 3/1.

To Win
Czech Republic 2/11 | Switzerland 32/10

O2 Arena | Prague Czech Republic
Champions for five of the last seven years, the Czech Republic are the second most successful country in the history of the Fed Cup, just behind USA. If the aforementioned Belarus-Germany tie lacked for star-power, this tie certainly does not. The Czech side will have a star-studded line-up this week: Petra Kvitova, Karolina Plisikova, Barbora Strycova and Lucie Safarova make for an imposing side.

But one shouldn’t underestimate the Swiss side. Belinda Bencic had that wonderful Hopman Cup victory coupled with a first round Aussie Open defeat of Venus Williams. Timea Bacsinsky is also highly competitive, but I can’t see past a Czech side simply dripping with talent. Kvitova’s victory in St Petersburg just underlines their potential. Back the hosts here.  

To Win
France 23/20 | Belgium 6/10

Vendespace, La Roche Sur Yon | France
Even though France are seeded fourth for this event, it is Belgium that have emerged as the favorites with the bookmakers. That perhaps has a lot to do with the fact that Belgium have Australian Open semi-finalist Elise Mertens in their ranks. Kirsten Flipkens and Alison Van Uytvanck will bolster the side, too. If it is Mertens carrying the freight for the Belgium side, it will most certainly be Kristina Mladenovic for the French.

The Frenchwoman reached the finals in St Petersburg to end a torrid run of form that must have shattered her confidence. The likes of Amandine Hesse and Pauline Parmentier aren’t likely to offer the greatest back up for the St Petersburg finalist- between the two of them they have only mustered three wins all year. Belgium at 6/10 looks appealing. 

To Win
USA 1/25 | Netherlands 7/1

US Cellular Arena, Ashville | United States
This is going to be by far and away the least competitive of all the matches- reflected in USA’s ridiculous 1/25 odds. USA have the might of the Williams sisters, coupled with the heavyweight Fed Cup presence of Coco Vandeweghe. Lauren Davies competes what is not only a formidable lineup this week, but perhaps the best bet for the entire tournament overall.

The defending champions come up against a Dutch side without one player in the WTA top 100: Richel Hogenkamp is the top ranked player at 107. Their doubles pairing of Demi Schuurs and Lesley Kerhove are going to need a Williams’s sister’s meltdown in order to avoid a whitewash. There's only one winner here, add the USA to all weekend multiples for a bit of value. 

Written by Damien Kayat for @Hollywoodbets.net

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