2019 Shiseido WTA Finals Shenzhen outright preview and betting predictions


Saturday, October 26, 2019 6:46 AM UTC

Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019 6:46 AM UTC

The WTA Finals field and groups have all been set, join us as we break it down to find the best outright selections for this year's tournament!


<div><h2><b>Trends and conditions</b></h2><p><br />[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐟𝐢𝐞𝐥𝐝 𝐢𝐬 𝐬𝐞𝐭!&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;See you at the &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/SHISEIDO_corp?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@SHISEIDO_corp&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/WTAFinals?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@WTAFinals&lt;/a&gt;,&lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/ashbarty?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@ashbarty&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Naomi_Osaka_?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@Naomi_Osaka_&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/KaPliskova?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@KaPliskova&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Simona_Halep?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@Simona_Halep&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Petra_Kvitova?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@Petra_Kvitova&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Bandreescu_?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@Bandreescu_&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/ElinaSvitolina?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@ElinaSvitolina&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/BelindaBencic?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@BelindaBencic&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/DScKvDCiyO\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/DScKvDCiyO&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— WTA (@WTA) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/WTA/status/1185591939476938753?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;October 19, 2019&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt; &lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;"}[/]</p><p>With the 2019 WTA season more or less wrapped up, and with most of the top 20 players having contested Zhuhai, the focus now turns to the biggest year-ending Championship. Only those who have distinguished themselves as among the world´s elite will get the chance to play this prestigious tournament, win substantial amounts of prize money and accumulate valuable ranking points to count towards their yearly yield. The top 8-ranked players will play the WTA Finals in Shenzhen, with a $14,000,000 prize pool on the line, $3,425,000 befalling the winner along with a maximum of 1500 ranking points if undefeated throughout.<br /><br />The event is taking place at the Shenzhen Bay Sports Centre, a multipurpose stadium that has been used for football, table tennis and swimming alike. Seating 13,000 spectators, it´s one of the largets venues in the world, and should make for a great atmosphere. After taking place in Singapore for the last five years, this is the first time the tournament is being held in Shenzhen. Thus, the court conditions are a bit of an unknown, but according to the players they have been described as fairly slow. Last year´s Champion is Elina Svitolina, who has once again qualified to defend her title.<br /><br />So, with that, without further ado let´s get into the group stage!<br /><br /><b>The Group Stage</b></p><p><b>[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;Draw released for 2019 &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/SHISEIDO_corp?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@SHISEIDO_corp&lt;/a&gt; WTA Finals Shenzhen🏆 &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/WTAFINALS?src=hash&amp;amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;#WTAFINALS&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/4mKmesPo6g\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/4mKmesPo6g&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— WTA Finals (@WTAFinals) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/WTAFinals/status/1187728375298887681?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;October 25, 2019&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt; &lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;"}[/]</b></p><p>Just like the Elite Trophy, the format in this tournament differs from the single elimination format we traditionally see in tournaments. The 8 players are divided into a Red group and a Purple group with 4 players in each. Playing once against the other three players in the group, the top two in each advance to a single elimination semifinal, where the group winners face the second placed player in the other group and vice versa. The winners in each semifinal contest the final. In the case of a tie-breaker between players in the group stage, here are how they are resolved:</p><p>Tiebreakers:</p><p><em>1. Greatest number of wins.</em></p><p><em>2. Greatest number of matches played.</em></p><p><em>3. <strong>In case of a 2-way tie:</strong></em></p><ul> <li> <p><em>Head-to-head results</em></p> </li></ul><p><strong><em>In case of a 3-way tie:</em></strong></p><ul> <li> <p><em>If three players each have the same number of wins, a player having played less than all three matches is automatically eliminated and the player advancing to the single elimination competition is the winner of the match-up of the two remaining tied players.</em></p> </li> <li> <p><em>Percentage of sets won</em></p> </li> <li> <p><em>Percentage of games won</em></p> </li></ul><p>Now, without any further ado, let´s break down the groups!</p><h2><b><u>Round Robin - Red Group</u></b></h2><div><b><u>[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;Red Group 🔴 &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/WTAFinals?src=hash&amp;amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;#WTAFinals&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/UMIbQ72SQG\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/UMIbQ72SQG&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— إيهاب #19 (@iheb_nadal) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/iheb_nadal/status/1187739514392981507?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;October 25, 2019&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt; &lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;"}[/]</u></b></div><div> </div><p><strong><u>[1]Ashleigh Barty</u></strong><br /><br />The world number 1 and the first to qualify for Shenzhen makes her debut this year, after taking home the Elite Trophy the year prior. Winning most matches on tour this year with 54, including a Roland Garros triumph, Barty will have to overcome the worst H2H record in this group, going 3-6 against the other players.<br /><br /><strong><u>[3]Naomi Osaka</u></strong><br /><br />Since failing to defend her US Open title a few months ago, Osaka has put together a tour best form consisting of 10 wins on the spin to win both Osaka and Beijing titles back-to-back. The Japanese star has winning records against both Kvitova and Barty, but has lost three times in a row this year to Bencic, truly a nightmare matchup awaiting here once more.<br /><br /><strong><u>[6]Petra Kvitova</u></strong><br /><br />Winner of the event in 2011 and finalist in 2015, Kvitova is the most experienced player in the 8-player field this year. After a season troubled with a left forearm injury, the powerful Czech has come back to form. The conditions here are slow however, and along with losing to all the players in her group this year things look tough for the veteran.<br /><br /><strong><u>[7]Belinda Bencic</u></strong><br /><br />Managing to qualify for this event in epic fashion as she leapfrogged Kiki Bertens at the last gasp with a Moscow title, Bencic caps off an amazing year with a debut appearance. Sporting a 9-6 record against the top-10 players this year, the Swiss is a known giant killer and the conditions will suit her game to a T.<br /><br />This is shaping up to be the most competitive group, and if any player here finds their best tennis, they could well make a surge for the semifinals. However, I see life being difficult for Petra Kvitova in particular, with the slow surface doing her powerful game no favors, despite her excellent H2H record against other players in the group. Ashleigh Barty on the other hand hasn´t been playing her best tennis down the stretch but managed to get results regardless. Up against losing records across the board and a tough matchup in Belinda Bencic, it´ll be a struggle to advance.<br /><br />However, the Aussie has beaten Kvitova twice this year, and could be contesting with Naomi Osaka for a spot in the semifinals. The Japanese player is likely to lose her fourth straight match against Bencic, but in current form should prove too much for both Kvitova an Barty. Which then leaves the often mentioned Swiss giant killer. I think Bencic has a fantastic chance to not only advance but win the group, with a great matchup against Osaka and her game with giant killing tendencies a headache for any player to face up against. Look for that to be telling as the world no. 7 advances ahead of her Japanese nemesis.<br /><br /><b><i>Predicted semifinalists:</i> </b><br /><strong>[7]Belinda Bencic<br />[3]Naomi Osaka</strong></p><p>[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;Yessssssss yes yessss &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/WTAFinals?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@WTAFinals&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/N73VJRsTZ2\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/N73VJRsTZ2&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— Belinda Bencic (@BelindaBencic) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/BelindaBencic/status/1185639398324494337?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;October 19, 2019&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt; &lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;"}[/]</p><h2><b><u>Round Robin - Purple Group</u></b></h2><p><b><u>[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;Purple Group 💜 &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/WTAFinals?src=hash&amp;amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;#WTAFinals&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/NSat8Dchd2\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/NSat8Dchd2&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— إيهاب #19 (@iheb_nadal) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/iheb_nadal/status/1187739727723675648?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;October 25, 2019&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt; &lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;"}[/]</u></b></p><div><strong><u>[2]Karolina Pliskova</u></strong><br /><br />If you leave out performances in the Majors, Pliskova could well be the world number 1. An incredibly consistent performer on all other levels, it´s been another fantastic season with four titles, the biggest one coming on the red dirt in Rome. A back-to-back semifinalist at this event in the past two years, the Czech will be one to look out for once more.<br /><br /><strong><u>[5]Bianca Andreescu</u></strong><br /><br />This year´s big sensation is without a doubt Andreescu, with the Mississaugan Mammoth putting together a scintillating year crowned with four titles - including the US Open triumph two months ago. Only losing on five occasions in total this year, having ridden a 16-match win streak up until Beijing and going 8-1 against top-10 players - she fears nothing.<br /><br /><strong><u>[4]Simona Halep</u></strong><br /><br />After pulling out of this event with a back injury last season, Halep once again comes in under an injury cloud. Struggling with a left leg injury and lower back injury since capturing a massive Wimbledon title, the Romanian might not yet be fully fit. If fit, she´ll be a danger though, compiling a 7-3 record against Pliskova and riding a 2-match win streak over Svitolina.<br /><br /><strong><u>[8]Elina Svitolina</u></strong><br /><br />The reigning Champion came into this event as the underdog last season, and answered by not losing a match enroute to the title. While it´s been unprecedented success in Majors with two semifinals, the usual title winning consistency in other events has been missing. After nine titles across the last two years, Svitolina has yet to win a title in 2019 and thus has had to battle hard to get here.<br /><br />While the Red Group looks quite open, there is no doubt in my mind who wins this group. Sporting an unbelievably powerful game and mental fortitude second to none, Bianca Andreescu has shown barely a sign of nerves. Even in the face of 23,000 roaring American fans trying to mount a Serena Williams comeback in the US Open final, the Canadian did not relent. Winner against both Svitolina and Pliskova in her first matchups, expect a repeat of those results here. Halep could be a stern assessment, but with fitness questions there, Andreescu emerges as the clear favourite to top proceedings.<br /><br />As for who´ll join the Mississaugan Mammoth, look no further than back-to-back semifinalist in Karolina Pliskova. While Andreescu might be an opponent to tough for the world no. 2, the other two opponents are there for the taking. Whilst trailing Halep 3-7 in the H2H, it´s the Czech who has won the last two matchups. Once in similarly slow conditions in Miami earlier this year, and one time at altitude on the red dirt of Madrid in 2018. The Romanian relies on stellar athleticism and movement to execute her counterpunching game, and if in any way physically hampered that play style takes a big blow. Svitolina on the other hand has struggled with her left knee for most of this season, and hasn´t looked at her best down the stretch. Look for Pliskova to take advantage.<br /><br /><strong><em>Predicted semifinalists:</em> </strong><br /><strong>[5]Bianca Andreescu<br />[2]Karolina Pliskova</strong></div><div>[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;.&lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Bandreescu_?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@Bandreescu_&lt;/a&gt; continues to make history 👏🇨🇦 &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/cCYhrSK2tW\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/cCYhrSK2tW&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Sportsnet/status/1186380867415035905?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;October 21, 2019&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt; &lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;"}[/]</div><h2><br />The Verdict</h2><div>Looking at the group stage projections, the semifinals would then pit Andreescu against Osaka and Bencic against Pliskova. While the Mississaugan Mammoth had her 16-match win streak broken by Osaka in Beijing, look for the Canadian to enact swift revenge upon that defeat with the lessons learned from it. In the other semifinal, giant killing Bencic has the counterpunching game in these slower conditions to defuse the Pliskova power game. She did just that in their lone matchup at Indian Wells earlier this season in similar conditions, and should extend the Czech´s final drought another year.<br /><br />All things considered, Andreescu and Bencic stand out as the two performers with a fantastic chance to crown their maiden appearance at the WTA Finals with a title. At prices of 4.75 and 13 respectively with Unibet, these two players look the value from and outright perspective at this illustrious event and will be my two selections.<br /><br />As per usual, there were so many things to go into, but too little time (and space). If you have any questions regarding my selections, or anything tennis related, feel free to hit me up on Twitter [@SnizeMaster]. Thank you for being with me this far, and until next time, zài jiàn!</div><div><br />[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;Your &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/WTAFinals?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@WTAFinals&lt;/a&gt; Class of 2019 &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/ku4K4f4p78\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/ku4K4f4p78&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— Jimmie48 Photography (@JJlovesTennis) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/JJlovesTennis/status/1187745628543172608?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;October 25, 2019&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt; &lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;"}[/]</div><div> </div><div><em><b>Best bet: Bianca Andreescu to win outright at 4.75 (15/4) with [Unibet] </b>1u<br /><b>Best bet: Belinda Bencic to win outright at 13 (12/1) with [Unibet] </b>1u</em></div></div>
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