Monday, 9 April 2012

WTA Copenhagen & Barcelona: Preview & Predictions

This week sees the beginning of the European clay court season in Barcelona and the hard court tournament in Denmark, which continues to somersault around the calendar each year...

WTA Copenhagen
Caroline Wozniacki
Copenhagen boasts a much stronger line-up than previous years although Caroline Wozniacki looks a dead cert to reach the final with much of the strength of this draw residing in the bottom half.  Wozniacki will first have to get past Urszula Radwanska before potentially meeting Sofia Arvidsson in the quarter-finals, who narrowly missed out on an upset win over the Dane in Indian Wells earlier this year.   Her draw looks to get much easier in the semi-finals with her projected opponent being Monica Niculescu; however I fancy Ksenia Pervak to have a good run on the indoor hard courts of Copenhagen.

The bottom half features Angelique Kerber, Mona Barthel, Jelena Jankovic and Kaia Kanepi.  Kerber and Barthel are likely to meet in one quarter-final, meanwhile the out-of-form pair of Jankovic and Kanepi could meet in the other.  As you would expect, i'm tipping Mona Barthel to reach the final! She reached the semi-finals in Copenhagen last year and has already beaten Kerber this year in Hobart so I cannot go against her this time.  Jankovic will play Laura Robson once more in the first round and I think will break her losing streak.  If Kanepi can get past Anastasia Rodionova in the first round, I think she can find her way back into form after a woeful patch since her title win in Brisbane at the start of the year.

Final Prediction - Caroline Wozniacki d. Mona Barthel
Dark Horses - Ksenia Pervak and Kaia Kanepi
My draw predictions for Copenhagen can be found here

WTA Barcelona
Francesca Schiavone
Barcelona is headlined this year by Francesca Schiavone, Julia Goerges, Dominika Cibulkova and Sara Errani headlining the draw.  The draw is pretty even with many players of a good standard, which makes predicting extremely difficult! In the top half, I fancy Flavia Pennetta to come through. I think Schiavone will find some wins on the clay after a turgid start to 2012, but I cannot see her winning the title.  As a dark horse, I would go for Sorana Cirstea to have a good week.  She does have a tricky first round match against Polona Hercog, but I wonder how the Slovenian will deal with that 6-0 6-0 semi-final loss at Charleston...

In the bottom half, i'm going for Julia Goerges to make the final.  She has looked much more consistent this year and loves the clay with her two titles both coming on the dirt.  She could face the young Spaniard, Garbine Muguruza Blanco in the second round, who stormed through to the 4th round of Miami.  There are a number of tricky players in this section with Sara Errani, Roberta Vinci, Simona Halep, Shahar Peer and Carla Suarez Navarro all ready to have a great run in Barcelona...

Final Predictions - Julia Goerges d. Flavia Pennetta
Dark Horses - Sorana Cirstea and Carla Suarez Navarro
My draw predictions for Barcelona can be found here

This is a pretty quiet week on the tennis front in terms of tournament status and compared to recent weeks so I will be taking a short break from blogging; however I will keep updating my prediction pages for Copenhagen, Barcelona and Houston so please do stay tuned!  In the next few weeks, we have two of my favourite tournaments (ATP in Monte Carlo and WTA in Stuttgart), which I will be back to keep you fully updated on! Look out for some previews at the end of the week :-)

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