Australian Open Best Bets, Day 7: Play strong Sandgren, underdog Gauff

Australian Open Best Bets, Day 7: Play strong Sandgren, underdog Gauff

Sandgren's commitment to fitness over the offseason has paid dividends, and he should pay on wagers in a match against Fabio Fognini.

All figures from DraftKings Sportsbook.

Tennys Sandgren (+128) to defeat [12] Fabio Fognini

Sandgren came through for us with a straight-set upset over Sam Querrey, and we're going to back him again. Breaking Querrey is no small feat, and Sandgren did it five times Friday night.

Fognini has already played two grueling five-setters. Fitness is imperative in a best-of-five-set match, and Sandgren showed up to Melbourne looking like a bodybuilder. UTR is an accurate metric, but it can’t factor in Sandgren's newfound strength and conditioning. Look for him to outlast the Italian, who often disappears if things aren’t going his way. 

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Coco Gauff (+123) to defeat [14] Sofia Kenin 

Gauff’s age has become something of a weapon. After defeating Venus Williams at Wimbledon, Chris Evert said, “If you are playing a 15-year-old you are going to be nervous.” It’s true. “You don’t want to lose to a 15-year-old,” Osaka said in her post-loss press conference.

Osaka also said this about the phenom:

“Her serve is way better than when I played her last year.”

“I was not expecting her to play like that.”

“I wasn’t swinging freely, but she was."

All this is to say that Coco Gauff is a transcendent talent playing incredible tennis. You won’t be able to bet her as an underdog for very long. 

[7] Michael Venus/John Peers (-200) to defeat Marcelo Arevalo/Johnny O’Mara 

If you really don’t like doubles, you could take a swing on Alison Riske to defeat Ash Barty at +310—maybe the immense pressure proves too much for the Aussie. You could also take a shot on Maria Sakkari—fueled by an electric Greek fanbase in Melbourne—to upset Petra Kvitova at +210.

But the better bet is on this doubles match. Chances are you haven’t heard of Marcelo Arevalo before, but after a successful career at the University of Tulsa, the former Top 10 junior has been a fixture on the ATP Challenger circuit. He has never made it past the third round of a major, and is unlikely to do so against home favorites John Peers and Michael Venus. 

Let’s compare resumes. While neither team has won a doubles title playing together, Arevalo and O’Mara have three combined titles. Venus and Peers have a combined 30. The experience, plus the pro Australian and New Zealand crowd, should push Peers and Venus over the top. This price is a steal.