After surviving a first-round scare, Greek tennis star Stefanos Tsitsipas gets his shot at avenging a first-round Wimbledon loss to Frances Tiafoe as they go head-to-head in second-round action in Tokyo. That match highlights a busy Day 4, which includes the U.S. women’s basketball team facing Nigeria and an American atop the odds table in women’s triathlon.
Tsitsipas is a massive favorite in his third career encounter with Tiafoe, who cruised to a 6-3, 6-2 triumph over South Korea’s Soonwoo Kwon to reach the Round of 32. Tsitsipas is a -150 favorite to prevail in straight sets.
News & Notes
Tsitsipas had all he could handle in his first-round duel with Philipp Kohlschreiber, ultimately prevailing thanks to a 77 percent success rate on first-serve points. He won six of the final seven games of the match to overcome a 2-0 third-set deficit and become the first Greek man to win a singles match at the Olympics in nearly 100 years.
Next up is a tricky encounter with Tiafoe, who barely broke a sweat in advancing to Round 2. Tiafoe racked up 12 aces against Kwon without committing a double fault, and won a whopping 85 percent of his first-serve points. He’ll look to duplicate his success in that Wimbledon encounter with Tsitsipas, when he saved all seven break points he faced.
Betting Pick: UNDER 21.5 Games (-110)
Tsitsipas was fortunate to escape with the first-round win, but looked dominant down the stretch and has a little extra motivation here against Tiafoe, who has traditionally fared poorly against elite players.
The American women’s basketball team is an overwhelming favorite against the Nigerians, who dropped a 31-point decision to Team USA in a recent exhibition. The total is set at 153, with the OVER at -120 and the UNDER at -110.
News & Notes
In terms of sheer talent, this women’s team matches any iteration of the men’s Dream Team rosters that have steamrolled the majority of opponents over the past few decades. The list includes future Basketball Hall of Famer Sue Bird, reigning WNBA Most Valuable Player A’ja Wilson, 2009 MVP Diana Taurasi and former WNBA scoring champion Skylar Diggins-Smith.
Nigeria, on the other hand, is reeling after missing out on a pair of players Team USA opted not to add. Nneka Ogwumike and Elizabeth Williams had applied to compete for the Nigerian side but were denied – leaving a team that was already considered a long shot to win the tournament without two elite players who would have helped narrow the talent gap between these sides.
Betting Pick: Team USA -29.5 (-110)
The Americans won’t be messing around as they look to defend their Olympic championship yet again. Look for them to come out and make an early statement against a disheartened Nigerian side.
American Katie Zaferes went through an up-and-down qualification process but is still seen as the woman to beat at +250, slightly ahead of Great Britain’s Georgia Taylor-Brown (+325). Fellow Briton Jessica Learmonth (+375) rounds out the top three.
News & Notes
There is no clear-cut favorite for the women’s triathlon competition, though we do have three competitors making up a clear top tier. That group is led by Zaferes, who won the 2019 world championship to cap an incredible run of competitions but has slipped to fourth in the world rankings and will be looking to improve on her 18th-place showing at the 2016 Summer Games.
She’ll face stiff competition from the British duo of Taylor-Brown and Learmonth, who are both behind Zaferes in the world rankings but have looked sensational of late. Taylor-Brown is the reigning world champion but has had to deal with injuries and illness, while Learmonth is coming off a second-place showing in the 2019 World Triathlon Series.
Betting Pick: Georgia Taylor-Brown (+325)
We don’t know what we’ll see from either of the top two betting favorites, but Taylor-Brown’s pre-injury performance was world-class – and she’ll be difficult to beat if she regains that form.