Sloane Stephens of the US during the women’s singles match against Czech Republic’s Petra Kvitova on day one of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London, Monday June 28, 2021. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)
- Of the 16 seeds in this half of the Wimbledon women’s draw, only eight remain as the third round begins
- No. 11 seed Garbiñe Muguruza vs. No. 21 Ons Jabeur is likely to be the best-quality clash
- As the odds begin to narrow, we pick three third round matches on July 2 that could provide good value
Aryna Sabalenka, the No. 2 seed, is well on track to win her quarter of the Wimbledon women’s singles draw.
In the other quarter of the bottom half, favorite Petra Kvitova went out to Sloane Stephens in the first round. Stephens, who wasn’t even among the top 10 pre-event favorites to take the quarter, has moved up the chart significantly.
Wimbledon Women’s Singles July 2 Odds
|Friday Matchups||Odds at DraftKings|
| Aryna Sabalenka vs. [Q] Maria Camila Osorio Serrano||-1000 / +650|
| Iga Swiatek vs. Irina-Camelia Begu||-530 / +380|
| Karolina Pliskova vs. Tereza Martincova||-385 / +285|
| Garbiñe Muguruza vs.  Ons Jabeur||-162 / +130|
| Elise Mertens vs.  Madison Keys||-115 / -108|
| Elena Rybakina vs. Shelby Rogers||-180 / +143|
|Sloane Stephens vs. [WC] Liudmila Samsonova||+125 / -157|
|Victoria Golubic vs. Madison Brengle||-375 / +280|
Odds as of July 1
Garbiñe Muguruza vs Ons Jabeur
The former Wimbledon champion and the up-and-comer from Tunisia have met only once.
But it was a tight one – Muguruza prevailed 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (4) in Hobart, the week before the 2020 Australian Open. It was so grueling that Muguruza withdrew from the tournament before her next match. (It was a good move; she went all the way to the final in Melbourne).
Their July 2 match also looks to be tight. And both are playing better now than they were then.
The former No. 1 Muguruza was down at No. 34 when they played. Jabeur, who won her first career WTA Tour event two weeks ago on the grass in Birmingham, was a qualifier ranked No. 85.
The Tunisian is 31-11 on the 2021 season so far; Muguruza is 27-9.
Ons Jabeur: History Maker
The Tunisian trailblazer is the 1st Arab woman to:
– Win a junior Slam (2011 RG)
– Make a Slam 3R (2017 RG)
– Make a Slam QF (2020 AO)
– Win a WTA singles title (2021 Birmingham)
– Rank inside the Top 70 – Currently highest-ranked ever at No.24. pic.twitter.com/gRvu05P9nr
— WTA Insider (@WTA_insider) June 20, 2021
Not much to choose between them – except that Muguruza won Wimbledon in 2015 and made the final in 2017. But that’s in the past. And it’s notable that in her other five appearances, she never got past the second round.
Meanwhile, Jabeur survived beating five-time champion Venus Williams – and a massively pro-Williams crowd on No. 1 Court – in the second round. Her attitude and respect for the legend won her a bunch of new fans.
She will make Muguruza move – something she’d ideally not want to do. It feels like her time.
Best Bet: Jabeur in three sets (+420)
Sloane Stephens vs Liudmila Samsonova
Stephens, the 2017 US Open champion, has that Grand Slam fire in her eyes this week. As her ranking tumbled outside the top 70, we’ve not seen it much.
She upset two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova in straight sets in the first round.
And as she looks at a wild card in Samsonova to get to the second week, she could also see a realistic path at least to the semifinals (if she’s looking. She shouldn’t be looking).
Samsonova, 22, went from the qualifying all the way to the title at the new 500-level tournament on grass in Berlin two weeks ago.
The previous week, she was playing a small 125K tournament on clay. Had she made a run there, none of this would even have happened.
In a heartbeat Samsonova went from No. 106 and headed to the Wimbledon qualifying, to No. 65 and earning the wild card from the All-England Club into the main draw.
It’s a lot. At a certain point, it feels likely to hit her.
The Russian also beat Stephens in their only meeting, at a tournament in Adelaide in February, after the Australian Open.
But this is headier territory – playing on the last “Manic Monday” at Wimbledon. It has the feeling of a tight two-setter for Stephens (over 22.5 games is at +112).
Best Bet: Stephens in two sets (+285)
Iga Swiatek vs Irina-Camelia Begu
Wednesday was a great day on the predictions front. And one of those involved Begu, who upset No. 26 seed Petra Martic in three sets.
Swiatek has more power than Martic, with a little less variety (although she has more than most).
The two are meeting for the first time. But with all the attention Swiatek is getting after winning the 2020 French Open, Begu will be more familiar with her game, than vice versa.
Calling for the upset is a…big call. But it’s not entirely out of the question. We do think this one could go the distance.
Best Bet: over 2.5 sets (+300)
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Stephanie gets the straight dope from the tennis insiders. On court, she has represented her country internationally. A BA in journalism led to years on the MLB beat and a decade covering tennis globally. She’s written for Postmedia, the Guardian, the New York Times and also publishes OpenCourt.ca.