Saturday, 27 October 2012

WTA YEC Istanbul: Final Showdown Predictions for Serena vs Sharapova

Maria Sharapova
Once again, I missed the boat on predicting the Azarenka/Sharapova semi-final... I am tired just like the players ;-) Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova will contest the final showdown of 2012 in Istanbul and on paper, there looks to be one clear winner.  Serena Williams strolled into the final with a 6-2 6-1 win over Agnieszka Radwanska.  As to be expected, Radwanska was running on borrowed time and she was going to struggle at 100% to push Serena.  Sharapova scored a first win on hard courts over Victoria Azarenka in 2012.  She won 6-4 6-2 against a mentally and physically tiring opponent; Azarenka has not played anywhere near her best this week, but Sharapova did well to pick up the pieces and make the final.

Serena has completely owned Sharapova this year with two comprehensive wins to add to the 9-2 head-to-head record.  The stats and previous matches do not go in Sharapova's favour, and Serena is also relatively well rested having had Friday off and barely expending any energy today.  Sharapova will have to put past matches behind her and start well, serve well and get a foothold in the match because if she can stay close with Serena, she can at least make her think more and perhaps throw the American off.  Anyway I hope its not another Olympic beatdown, but I am backing Serena.

Prediction - Serena to beat Sharapova in 2 sets

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