Tennis best bet for the action at the Miami Open on Thursday, March 30th
There were quite a few rain delays at the Miami Open on Wednesday, which made it tough to follow along with the action. Let's hope for some better weather in Miami Gardens for Thursday, March 30th. I have two tennis best bets written up for this slate, but that doesn’t mean I won't add more. Make sure you check out the Pro Picks page, where I might be adding some more picks in the morning.
I have been throwing plays on the picks page throughout the course of the tournament, with some being ones that aren’t included in these stories. I like to see how lines moves and will occasionally throw an extra bet or two on my card. So, you might miss out on some bets if you aren’t checking that every now and then. With that out of the way, keep reading for the tennis picks for Thursday!
MORE: Here are the tennis odds for every match you'll see today!
Taylor Fritz vs. Carlos Alcaraz
Fritz is coming off a very big win over Holger Rune in the Round of 16, but it’s hard to be overly impressed with how the American played in that one. Fritz didn’t exactly look bad in that match, but Rune completely failed to show up. The 19-year-old was missing shots he can normally be counted on to make, and he just couldn’t find the range from the baseline. At one point he asked for a review on a shot that he hit nearly five feet out. And Rune wasn’t very effective with his first serve either, as he won just 60.0% of his first serve points — he’s winning 73.1% of those on the season.
Against Alcaraz, Fritz isn’t going to have the luxury of not playing his best tennis. And truth be told, we haven’t seen that from the American in quite a bit. Fritz is winning a career-high 76.9% of his matches this season, but he has largely benefited from getting easier draws than normal — that’s just one of the perks of being a top-10 player. However, his break percentage is down this season, so he’s not getting into his opponent’s serve as often as usual. And he just looks a little sluggish from the baseline.
On the flip side, Alcaraz is playing at the highest level of his career, and this version of the Spaniard is one of the best players to ever play the sport. Not only is Alcaraz filling up the highlight reel, but he has also learned to play more disciplined tennis. And that should help him pick apart a player like Fritz, who does have flaws in his game. Alcaraz will spend the first few games feeling him out and then he’ll start to pepper the American with shots that will make him uncomfortable.
Fritz’s serve is good enough to keep him in sets, so it wouldn’t be shocking if we see a tiebreaker or a 7-5 set. But look for Alcaraz to win this one in straights and move one step closer to winning the Sunshine Double.
Bet: Alcaraz To WIn 2-0 (-120)
Elena Rybakina vs. Jessica Pegula
This is a match in which the sportsbooks are probably hoping to catch some casual bettors sleeping. Pegula is the third-ranked player in the world and holds a 2-0 record in her head-to-head series with Rybakina, who is currently the 10th-ranked player in the world. However, Rybakina is a big moneyline favorite in this one, so people might jump on Pegula as an underdog. But we're going the other way with it, as Rybakina is clearly the better player between these two.
The 23-year-old is coming off a win at Indian Wells last week, and these conditions in Miami suit her game a whole lot better. Rybakina has one of the best serves on the planet, and she also plays a powerful game from the baseline. On fast courts like these, that can be extremely hard to beat. Meanwhile, Pegula is coming off a grueling three-set match against Anastasia Potapova on Tuesday. She said after the match that it took everything out of her, so it's hard to see her going out and beating one of the best players in the world. And that's especially true considering Pegula isn't exactly great on her own serve.
This is just a tough matchup for Pegula, who hasn't quite gotten over the hump against the sport's elite players. There's a clear hierarchy in the women's game right now, and Pegula isn't a part of the top tier. And unfortunately for her, Rybakina absolutely is. With that said, we like Rybakina to get the job done here.
Bet: Rybakina -2.5 Games (-130)