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tennis | Thursday, September 22, 2022 1:49 PM

Friday Tennis Best Bet: WTA Seoul, Tatjana Maria vs Lin Zhu

Friday Tennis Best Bet: WTA Seoul, Tatjana Maria vs Lin Zhu
Contributor: Independent Photo Agency / Alamy Stock Photo

Tatjana Maria vs Lin Zhu Best Bet: Friday, September 23rd

We head to the 250 event in Seoul, South Korea for Friday’s quarterfinal selection from the women’s events.

It’ll be the veteran Tatjana Maria having one of the best years of her career at 35 years old, taking on Lin Zhu, who is always a tougher out than many expect – especially when she can play in quicker conditions on hard courts.

In this article:

Tatjana Maria vs Lin Zhu Preview

September 23rd, Time TBD

After a strong grass season and an impressive run at a high-level ITF indoors earlier in the year, and a title in Bogota at altitude, Maria has rejoined the top-100 at the age of 35, and is playing her best tennis in a long while.

The outdoor hard-court results, however, haven’t really been there, and even the past few weeks and the 3-1 record she’s put up since Chennai isn’t exactly head-turning considering who she’s played.

Now taking on an incredibly solid hard courter, who prefers the quicker conditions that the tournament in Seoul provides, Maria could be in trouble against Zhu.

Matchup-wise, Zhu shouldn’t be bothered too much by Maria. While the serve will play and find the German some free points, the slice won’t bother Zhu and the Chinese native should be able to exploit Maria’s lack of mobility in a few different ways.

First, she is strong at creating angles and keeping the ball to the outer thirds of the court, meaning Maria could constantly find herself in situations where she’s forced to go side-to-side. Ultimately, without being a strong mover, you’re bound to leave plenty of balls short with very defensive shots.

Secondly, Zhu also plays a very flat-hitting style. That means it takes far less time for the ball to get from her racquet to Maria’s side of the court. Combined with the ability to move the ball side-to-side seamlessly, that strategy should prove to be very effective for the 28-year-old.

Tatjana Maria vs Lin Zhu Best Bet

For my money, Maria simply has not been convincing enough this season or in the last two weeks. Dominant wins over Ankita Raina and Kimberly Birrell don’t move the metre much with regards to a match against a top-100 player like Zhu. A loss to Nadia Podoroska doesn’t help either, and the win over Eugenie Bouchard was as close as they come and a case can be made Bouchard was the better player overall in that one.

Combined with the fact that Zhu is one of the least talked about players in the top-100, despite a solid record at lower-level events on hard courts (this being a 250 event with a relatively weak field has me more inclined to believe that record is applicable to a tournament like this) has me seeing value on Zhu.

  • Selection: Zhu to win
  • Best Odds: 2.07 (Pinnacle)
  • Stakes: 4/10
  • Bonus: Zhu to win 2-0 at 3.20 odds with Pinnacle using 2/10 stakes.

Odds as at 11:45 pm on September 22nd, 2022. Odds may now differ.

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