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Thursday, 8 September 2016

US Open Tennis Day 11 Picks 2016 (September 8th)

The Semi Finalists have been set up and the next four days will mean there is limited tennis on each of those days as we split the remaining six matches over those days.

It is all about Arthur Ashe Court with all matches due to be played on that court and Day 11 is all about the two women's Semi Finals and it does bring together four very good players. The matches will have a different feel with the Serena Williams-Karolina Pliskova match likely to focus on the heavy serves and big groundstrokes compared with the Angelique Kerber-Caroline Wozniacki match which will be about the long, extended rallies.

I think both Semi Finals will make for really good viewing and it should be a fun evening for those who have tickets for the night session.

Wednesday all produced the final four men's Semi Finalists and both Quarter Finals played saw the 'underdog' come through. Andy Murray has to feel disappointed he has let outside distractions cost him against Kei Nishikori, but I think he should have got the job done long before the 'gong' on Arthur Ashe distracted him in the fourth set.

Murray had been a break up in every set, but blew the second set once the roof closed and Nishikori recorded the second biggest win of his career on the same court where he beat Novak Djokovic two years ago.

In the evening and into the early hours of Thursday morning saw Stan Wawrinka outlast Juan Martin Del Potro in another quality Quarter Final and now both Wawrinka and Nishikori have to believe they have every chance to win this Slam.

Novak Djokovic has not looked at 100% which will give the other three men more belief it is their time although Gael Monfils is the one to prove that he can get the job done as he tries to reach his maiden Grand Slam Final. Those Semi Final matches will be played on Day 12 before we get to the two Finals to be played on Saturday and Sunday and the US Open looks set to produce a grandstand finish to the tournament.

Serena Williams - 5.5 games v Karolina Pliskova: The biggest question for me around this Semi Final is whether Serena Williams has had enough time to recover from her Quarter Final win over Simona Halep. It has been accepted that Serena has needed the day between matches to help her shoulder recover, but she was confident she wouldn't be bothered by having to play back to back matches on Wednesday and Thursday.

It was a tough win for Serena Williams over Halep, but she could have got that match wrapped up earlier if not missing a whole host of break points in the second set. She did serve well against a solid returner like Halep and the serve is going to be a key shot in this Semi Final against Karolina Pliskova.

It's still crazy to think Pliskova had never reached the Fourth Round of a Grand Slam tournament before the US Open. She had to dig incredibly deep to beat Venus Williams in that Fourth Round and I do wonder if she is going to be able to serve big enough to beat Serena Williams having been broken six times by the older Williams sister.

Pliskova will also be facing different conditions playing in the evening session and that might take time to adjust to and even though she has been in incredible form, I think this is going to be a huge test for Pliskova. She will be under pressure from the Serena serve, while her own serve is a big weapon against most, but was put under pressure by Venus Williams and now faces the bigger and better returner.

If the shoulder is an issue this might be a close match, but I think Serena Williams will be good to go and can break down the Pliskova game in a 63, 63 win and move onto the Final.

Angelique Kerber - 3.5 games v Caroline Wozniacki: The dream Final for the US Open organisers has to be Serena Williams vs Angelique Kerber for the third time in four Grand Slam events in 2016. This time it wouldn't just be for the great achievement of winning a Grand Slam title, but the winner of that match would also become World Number 1.

The story would write for itself if that was the Final on Saturday and I think we are likely to get to that match after two interesting Semi Final matches. While the first Semi Final will have a lot of big winners and heavy shots drawing gasps from the crowd, this one will entertain the fans in a different way as the athleticism of both Kerber and Caroline Wozniacki will see a lot of special rallies put together.

The US Open fans have always loved Wozniacki for the fight she shows around the court and I think they will admire Kerber for the same. However Wozniacki is the underdog and will get the majority of the support in what has been a surprising and unexpected run to the Semi Final. There has not been a lot of form coming into the US Open, but Wozniacki has been at her battling best to come through the draw, although things will be different in this one.

The majority of players Wozniacki has faced have been attacking players that can be frustrated by strong defensive ones like the Dane. Svetlana Kuznetsova and Madison Keys will go for their shots over and over, but Kerber is a cleverer player that is happy to rally and bide her time waiting for the right ball to attack.

Her own defensive skills will mean Wozniacki has to work very hard to break her down and I am not surprised that Kerber has the edge on the head to head. The former World Number 1 has the edge when it comes to the hard court matches, leading 5-4, but Kerber is an improved player and the confidence is in a much stronger place when they go into this Semi Final having won a Grand Slam title and reached the Final of another in 2016.

Kerber had been in stronger form over the summer and I think she has the opportunity to earn a few more shorter balls from the serve which can provide all the difference in a tight match. I think Wozniacki will struggle to stay with Kerber the longer this goes on and I am expecting the World Number 2 to set up a Final with Serena Williams after winning this in two tight, long sets but ones that eventually see her prevail 75, 64.

MY PICKS: Serena Williams - 5.5 Games @ 2.10 Bet365 (2 Units)
Angelique Kerber - 3.5 Games @ 1.83 Coral (2 Units)

US Open Update: 36-36, + 6.20 Units (136 Units Staked, + 4.56% Yield)

1 comment:

  1. It wasn’t expected for Karolina Pliskova to win yesterday's game played in the US Open 2016 tournament. Ranked as #11 in ATP, K. Pliskova applied successfully her strengths and scored a well deserved victory against Serena Williams. I am happy to see her to move further in the tournament and rankings.