#7 Vera Zvonareva
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#2 Kim Clijsters
The US Open comes down to this. Vera Zvonareva and Kim Clijsters have survived six rounds of tennis betting action, and now they will square off against each other on Saturday night to crown a champion of the fourth and final Grand Slam major of the year.
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At Wimbledon earlier this year, Zvonareva ultimately lost in the finale in her first ever Grand Slam final. Now, she has her second chance to cash in for her first career major title. It has only taken a total of 12 sets for the Russian to make it to the finale, which is the minimum for six matches. Many criticized her relatively easy trek to the semifinals, but after taking care of top seeded Caroline Wozniacki and doing so in straight sets was remarkable and proved just how strong of a contender she really is. Zvonareva was only broken one time in the two sets, which was remarkable considering the fact that Wozniacki made a tournament out of breaking fellow women. Instead, the Russian turned the tables, picking up four breaks in two sets. She also played relatively spotless tennis, committing a relatively low 25 unforced errors.
It has been 21 matches at the US Open since Clijsters has been defeated. She’ll be looking for her third straight championship here in Flushing for tournaments that she entered, with victories in 2005 and 2009. No one even remotely got in Clijsters’ way until the quarterfinals, but from that point forward, both Samantha Stosur and Venus Williams pushed her to the maximum three sets. It was almost all over for Clijsters in the second set against the American in the semifinals on Friday, but she persevered 7-2 in a tiebreaker. From that point forward, she captured a 6-4 third set to move on to the finale. Clijsters has committed too many unforced errors at this tournament, including 43 against the elder Williams sister. Both the American and the Belgian went 4-for-6 on break chances in what amounted to be a very evenly contested match.
Clijsters is a hefty favorite of the oddsmakers, and for good reason. However, we’ve been on the Zvonareva bandwagon since the quarterfinals, and we are going to continue to ride that train. This Russian is due to come up with that breakthrough performance, as she truly is one of the best in the world. Back Zvonareva at these great odds to pull off yet another upset.
Selection: Vera Zvonareva +210 at BetPhoenix
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