Coco Gauff survived a tough test from former world No. 4 Caroline Garcia on Saturday, ultimately outlasting the Frenchwoman 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-1. The teenagers combination of raw power and speed was a bit too much for Garcia, who played fine tennis until the third set.

Gauff will now face the heavy hitting Spaniard Paula Badosa for a spot in the fourth round. Badosa has enjoyed a fantastic 2021 campaign, and this match should not disappoint from an excitement standpoint. As of Sunday, Gauff is listed as a slight -130 favorite with an over/under game total of 21.5. I typically try and steer clear of game totals, as it’s a more rewarding strategy to pick players with either a fitness or matchup advantage, but a beatdown for either player seems very unlikely.


Paula Badosa prepares for practice at Indian Wells. (Matt Fitzgerald)

Paula Badosa prepares for practice at Indian Wells. (Matt Fitzgerald)

After watching Gauff in person yesterday, it’s clear that when her forehand is landing, she has the potential to demolish anyone in the world. But too often there were stretches of inconsistent play, as she routinely missed rally ball forehands, allowing Garcia to claw her way back in the match. Few players own a more solid forehand than Badosa, who should pepper Gauff’s forehand wing with heavy shots and solid depth.

Betting the over total on Gauff’s matches has been a profitable strategy for 2021, and that trend should continue in this matchup between evenly matched players.

The Pick: Over 21.5 total games