The US Open, the final Grand Slam of the season which gets underway at Flushing Meadows next Monday, will of course be top priority.

However, WTA Cleveland provides an excellent opportunity to head to that major with confidence at a maximum.

Most of the leading lights will be enjoying a well-earned rest after last week’s efforts in Cincinnati but a strong field has still been assembled with world number six Caroline Garcia headlining the show.

There are two more top-16 performers involved in Veronika Kudermetova and Barbora Krejcikova, yet it is teenage talent Mirra Andreeva that heads the betting.

Big things are expected of Andreeva, the 16-year-old sensation that made the fourth round at Wimbledon last month, and she will be hoping to claim a breakthrough win.

WTA Cleveland Championships 2023 tips

  • Sloane Stephens each-way @ 9/1
  • Ekaterina Alexandrova each-way @ 10/1

Sloane Stephens each-way @ 9/1

Stephens could put her experience to good use

It would be no surprise to see Andreeva live up to her potential in Cleveland but the bookmakers are taking no risks and there is better value to be had.

Kudermetova and Krejcikova have plenty to prove after first-round exits in Cincinnati and it could be that Sloane Stephens puts her best foot forward.

The American claimed her maiden Grand Slam title at the US Open in 2017, showing she comes good at this time of year, and recent efforts have hinted at a rejuvenation.

Stephens, who made the fourth round of the French Open earlier this summer, defeated tournament top seed Garcia on her way to the last 16 in Cincinnati most recently.

The 30-year-old would be in line to meet Andreeva in the second round but, if putting her experience to good use and prevailing in that, could soon see her draw open up.

That, therefore, makes her price of 9/1 look a touch generous and we know these are conditions that play to her strengths.

Ekaterina Alexandrova each-way @ 10/1

Alexandrova could capitalise on generous draw

The top half of the draw looks less competitive than the bottom and many will be expecting top seed Garcia to justify her lofty world ranking.

However, the Frenchwoman is too hit and miss to be supported at short prices and she has lost each of her last four matches, which highlights her potential vulnerability.

That makes fourth seed Ekaterina Alexandrova, who is the current world number 22, an interesting punting proposition.

The Czech girl had an excellent grass-court campaign, winning silverware in Den Bosch and finishing runner-up in Berlin before a last-16 run at Wimbledon.

She made little impact on her return to action in Cincinnati but it is possible that busy schedule took some recovering from.

With that blow out under her belt and a decent draw to work with, expect a better effort from Alexandrova and, unlike some, she knows how to win having claimed four WTA Tour titles in her career.

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