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WTA Indian Wells betting tips: Best outright bets for 2019 BNP Paribas Open

Leye Aduloju 6 Mar 2019
  • Indian Wells women's tips: Best bets on the women's singles
  • WTA Indian Wells is live from Indian Wells from 6-17 March

We've got the best bets from the Indian Wells women's singles field for 2019, starring the great Serena Williams, defending champion Naomi Osaka and a host of other contenders...

Outright Winner: Simona Halep

Serena Williams is the bookmakers’ favourite to win the Indian Wells title, but can she really go all the way?

Of course! She is the great Serena Williams, and will be fired up this one, keen to pick up that first title since her return to the tour, but this is an extremely tough Indian Wells field, and she will have to be at her absolute best to go all the way. If you want to go with the bookmakers, and back Williams to win the title, the legendary American is at 13/2 @ Betfair .

I don't think Williams will win though. She's got a difficult start, as she may have to play former world No. 1’s and multiple major winners, Victoria Azarenka and Garbine Muguruza in the opening two rounds. While Azarenka and Muguruza have not been as good as they can be in recent times, they have been two of Serena’s biggest rivals over the last decade, and have beaten the American in big matches in the past. They will relish the opportunity to take aim a potentially rusty Williams, who has not played since the Australian Open.

Williams, of course, can blast her way past Azarenka and Muguruza, but the job doesn't get any easier, with potential matches against Sloane Stephens or Kiki Bertens, and Simona Halep still to contend with.

So, if Williams isn't going to win it? Who will? I really like Halep (8/1 @ Ladbrokes). Of all the top players, she is the one with the easiest draw, and shouldn't encounter any dangers until she potentially runs into Elina Svitolina in the quarter finals. The 2015 champion can therefore play her way into the tournament and peak for the closing stages. It's not just about the draw, Halep has been improving through the weeks, and I expect that improvement to continue into Indian Wells. She began the season under an injury cloud, and lost her first match of the year to Ashleigh Barty in Sydney, but has since reached the fourth round of the Australian Open, where she lost to Serena in a three-set epic, the final in Doha and another quarter final in Dubai. Halep hasn't won a title since last August- could this be the tournament where that draw ends?

Everyone in the top ten, and beyond, will feel they have a chance to win Indian Wells, especially given how Naomi Osaka came from virtually nowhere to claim a stunning triumph last season- a run which set in motion her extraordinary rise to No. 1.  Being the top seed, Osaka is naturally very well backed by the bookmakers, but I have my doubts about the Japanese heading into the tournament. She has played just one match since the Australian Open- a straight sets loss to Kristina Mladenovic in Dubai. Also, this is another difficult draw that could pitch her against Mladenovic again in her opening match, starting off a treacherous route that could also include Danielle Collins, Caroline Wozniacki/Belinda Bencic, Karolina Pliskova and Petra Kvitova. She is also attempting to complete a rare Indian Wells double, as only one woman, Martina Navratilova in 1991, has successfully defended the title. The summary of all of this is that: I don't envy her.

Petra Kvitova (11/1 @ bet365) and Karolina Pliskova (18/1 @ BetVictor) may be worth given a shot, while Elina Svitolina (14/1 to win Indian Wells @ William Hill ), has also been good this year without being rewarded with a title. 

I'm not expecting too much from Angelique Kerber, Sloane Stephens and Caroline Wozniacki- the latter two especially have not got going at all this year.

RECOMMENDED BET: Simona Halep to win at 8/1 @ Ladbrokes .


Name the finalists: Simona Halep vs Petra Kvitova

If Simona Halep is going to win the title, according to me, she obviously has got to play someone in the final! There's a long list of potential finalists from the top half, starting from the very top of the draw sheet, which is occupied by world No. 1, Naomi Osaka. An Osaka-Halep final is at 20/1 @ Betfair ; but I won't be recommending that, as I don't think Osaka will go that far. Karolina Pliskova has played well at India Wells in recent years- reaching the semi-finals in 2016 and 2017, and quarter finals in 2018. She's also had a fine start to the season, and looks primed for another strong run at Indian Wells. A Pliskova-Halep final is valued at 33/1 @ Paddy Power .

Unlike her compatriot Pliskova, Czech, Petra Kvitova doesn't have the best record at Indian Wells, as she has made the quarter finals just twice- in 2013 and 2016- and never gone further, but she has arguably been the most in-form player on the tour through the last couple of months, and simply cannot be ignored. Back Kvitova vs Halep in the Indian Wells final at 20/1 @ Betfair .

It's not set in stone that Halep will reach the final (I don't have that power!), especially with the great Serena Williams in the vicinity, so let's examine a few possibilities involving Williams. Serena Williams vs Petra Kvitova for the final is valued at 16/1 @ Betfair , while a mouth-watering rematch of last year's US Open final against Osaka is at 16/1 @ Paddy Power .

RECOMMENDED BET

First Quarter Winner: Belinda Bencic

I'm really intrigued by this section of the Indian Wells draw, especially because I believe Osaka (11/4 to win the first quarter @ Betfair ) will fall early which presents an opportunity for someone else other that the top seed to come through to the last eight. The next in line after Osaka is Karolina Pliskova, who at 9/2 @ Paddy Power , is quite attractive, but even juicier (and likelier?) is Belinda Bencic (12/1 to win the first quarter @ Betfair). Bencic was sensational in Dubai, taking down four top-ten players to win her first title since 2015. After over a week of rest and recovery, I'm sure she will be raring to go again. There's no doubt that when the Swiss is on her game, she's got top-ten, maybe top-five ability. It will not be easy, as she may have to get through Caroline Wozniacki in the third round, but Wozniacki has not played since the Australian Open, and is only 2-3 for the season. Bencic will definitely be favourite if that match happens. Then there's the possibility of a match with fellow 21-year-old Osaka in the fourth round, which could be followed by a quarter final against Pliskova in an extremely difficult route. Considering how she battled through a quartet of top-ten opposition in Dubai, she will not be fazed. It’s going to be tough, but given her form, and the odds, it's definitely worth going for!

RECOMMENDED BET


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WTA Indian Wells betting tips: Best outright bets for 2019 BNP Paribas Open

The best bets on the women's singles field at the 2019 BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells

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