Shane Lambert looks ahead to the 4th round French Open Ladies Singles and he is strong on Tsvetana Pironkova in outright and handicap markets against Agnieszka Radwanksa.
Tsvetana Pironkova has come right out of the blue at the 2016 French Open. The veteran used to be a major force at Wimbledon, but she's never had much at Roland Garros in her career. Entering this year's event she came in cold and ranked outside of the Top 100. She therefore has to be happy to be into the fourth round through Sara Errani, Johanna Larsson, and Sloane Stephens - a modestly difficult draw.
Pironkova has picked up a winnable match in the fourth round. She'll face Agnieszka Radwanska, a high-ranked player that has righted her clay-court ship in time to hang around Roland Garros. I actually had Aga going out early at the 2016 French Open; however Radwanska is moving uncharacteristically well on clay. She's retrieving almost everything that comes her way and she's often tucking her returns into a corner with some kind of funky spin on the ball to boot.
Heading into the fourth round, Radwanska is a heavy favorite to beat Pironkova, however I think the World No. 2 remains over-rated. Odds of 1/5 on Aga to win straight up can't really be touched in this match in my view, odds that seem to ignore who Pironkova has beaten at Roland Garros already - and how badly.
With no lost sets in the tournament and only one tiebreaker, I think Pironkova will battle Radwanska. +5.5 for a handicap on games is plenty help for this in-form player against a top player that has not been dominant for the last few months. I do feel as though the Bulgarian can beat Radwanska straight up and I like 4/1 at bet365 for the upset. However, my firmer confidence lays with the games handicap as I just can't see Pironkova getting worked here.
2.5 points win Pironkova's handicap for games at +5.5 at 10/11 with 888Sport
1 point win Pironkova to beat Radwanska at 4/1 with bet365