Aus Open – Thursday Semi Finals

Naomi Osaka vs Serena Williams, 2 pm
Osaka $1.67

Both of these two are usually overrated in the market, so it’s interesting to see the betting shifts when they match up. A lot of the action has come in on Serena so far, but I’ll take the favourite Osaka at $1.67.

They’ve both had impressive runs to reach this point, only losing a set apiece all tournament. At this point in their careers, I’d argue that Osaka is the stronger version of the same archetype.

Serena can’t win the power battle against her and is certainly losing on the speed side as she edges towards 40. Hard court is also far and away Osaka’s best surface, where she has a 41-7 combined record at the Aus and US open. This is one that could easily go the distance and it’s hard not to question Serena’s endurance at the end of a potential 3rd set.

Novak Djokovic vs Aslan Karatsev, 7:45 pm
Djokovic 3-0 $1.70

I’ll take Novak to win in straight sets here, paying a reasonable $1.70. Karatsev has had an impressive run to reach this point, but Novak is definitely a level above anyone he has faced so far.

He realistically should’ve been out earlier, when FAA pulled off a huge choke after winning the first 2 sets comfortably. Dimitrov also got off to an early lead against him in the quarters, before inexplicably choking midway through the 2nd.

If he starts poorly against Novak, I just don’t see how he gets back into this. Two impressive matches in a row don’t discount the rather disappointing preceding decade. If Novak’s injury is serious, I expect him to look to finish this one quickly to get maximum prep time ahead of what should be a much tougher final.