WTA Finals Red Group: Halep and Sharapova battle it out
Sam Barnard, Assistant Sports Editor | October 26, 2015
WTA Finals Red Group, matchday two
- Singapore Indoor Stadium, Singapore
- Opening day losers Radwanska and Pennetta scheduled to start at 7:00 GMT
- Table-topper hopefuls Halep and Sharapova to follow at around 11:30 GMT
Halep and Sharapova battle for potential Red Group top spot
WTA Finals Red Group favourites Simona Halep (even-money) and Maria Sharapova (5/4) came through their first round-robin fixtures against Flavia Pennetta and Agnieszka Radwanska respectively, and now face each other to put them in good stead of taking top spot.
Opening day losers Pennetta and Radwanska face-off first in a must-win clash to open day three of the event, so check out Coral’s preview and match betting tips below…
Simona Halep v Maria Sharapova
Two of women tennis’ top stars meet so early in this competition, and this could so easily be the final in this elite indoor hard surface Singapore tournament too.
Last year’s runner-up Halep goes into this duel as the slight 4/5 odds-on favourite, perhaps due to the fact she is ranked higher than Sharapova (evens) and saw off her first day opponent far more easily – beating Pennetta 6-0 6-3.
However, it is the Russian, who defeated Radwanska 4-6 6-3 6-4, that has been dominant in their head-to-heads, having won all five including three times on hard courts.
Each of the last four meetings have all come close, the previous three in three sets, so back Sharapova to triumph 2-1 again at a tempting 3/1 price.
Halep is a good shout to claim the first set, though, having done so in two of those matches, so is odds-on at 8/11 to do so again. Former WTA Finals champion Sharapova (in 2004) also lost the opener against Radwanska before winning.
Agnieszka Radwanska v Flavia Pennetta
In the second battle of the day, which takes place first, two-time semi-finalist of this event Radwanska takes on surprise US Open champion Pennetta, who will retire after this tournament.
The Pole is the heavy odds-on favourite at 3/10 due to her determined showing against Sharapova and her overall 5-3 head-to-head record over the Italian veteran (5/2).
Each of their last six meetings have been one-sided affairs, with Radwanska winning four of them, including a 6-1 6-1 victory this year. She is a more temping 5/6 shout to triumph 2-0 again.
For better odds in her favour, back the Polish number one to whitewash Pennetta in the opening set 6-0 at 12/1, like Halep did too on day one.
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Coral’s top tip: Sharapova leads Halep 5-0 in head-to-heads, but most have been close battles, so back the Russian at 3/1 to win 2-1