Monday, 23 September 2013

WTA Tokyo 2nd Round Preview: Azarenka against Venus tops Tuesday's schedule

1st round action in Tokyo wrapped up today with a series of spectacular collapses.  Madison Keys, who struggled for momentum during the summer hard court season due to a number of injuries, had a really great win over Carla Suarez Navarro as she recovered from a 6-2 5-2 deficit to win 2-6 7-5 6-2.  Last week's Seoul finalist, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, suffered a similar disaster to CSN as she blew several shots at serving for the win over Simona Halep before eventually retiring in the third set.  There are some stunning matches to watch tomorrow although I am back at work so best I can do is highlights!

1. Victoria Azarenka v Venus Williams
Venus Williams
Less than three weeks after losing out to Serena Williams in the US Open final, Victoria Azarenka makes her return to the tour and against none other than Serena's sister, Venus Williams.  Venus has certainly had her struggles this year, most notably with her back, which has severely affected her serve.  However in her first round match, she produced arguably her most convincing performance since making the semis of Charleston as she swiftly dispatched of Mona Barthel in straight sets, 6-3 6-1.  

Venus leads the head-to-head 2-0 with straight set wins in 2008 and 2010; of course Azarenka is a significantly improved player these days, but their last match, which Venus won in the final of Dubai, was a sensational match.  I think this will be another good one and Venus should make a fast start having already played a match this week.  Still, Vika should get through this one.

Prediction - Azarenka to beat V.Williams in 2 sets (1 tight, 1 easy)

2. Sloane Stephens v Eugenie Bouchard
Eugenie Bouchard
Knocking on the door of the top ten and a place in the WTA year-ending-champs, this is a big week for Sloane Stephens.  The young American enjoyed a no-nonsense straight sets wins over Stephanie Voegele in the first round and takes on the equally talented, Eugenie Bouchard in round two.  Genie took out Monica Puig, 6-0 6-4 and for the second time this year.  Puig won just 6 points in the first set and a whopping 0% on first serve points won.  

Bouchard made the semi-finals of Quebec City two weeks ago and like Sloane, I think she will be one of the promising crop that will hit the big time in the next few years.  This will be a second career match-up with Sloane winning in Washington last year.  I do not see there being much between the pair, but I think Sloane's better ability to close out will edge her into the third round.

Prediction - Stephens to beat Bouchard in a 3rd set tiebreak

3. Sara Errani v Svetlana Kuznetsova
Sara Errani
Question marks surround Sara Errani and how she is going to get on this week in Tokyo after admitting at the US Open that the pressure was getting to her of performing as one of the top seeds.  She will start her Tokyo campaign with a really tough match against Svetlana Kuznetsova.  After labouring through all her matches in July and August following a lengthy spell on the sidelines after the French, Kuznetsova produced some solid wins at the US before eventually falling to Flavia Pennetta.  She was impressive in beating Paula Ormaechea in the first round of Tokyo and handily, 6-1 6-2.  The last time this pair played, Errani dished out a bagel and shocked Sveta with a straight sets win in the 4th round of Roland Garros.  I think this match will see an entirely different outcome...

Prediction - Kuznetsova to beat Errani in 2 tight sets

Best of the rest: 2nd Round Tokyo Predictions
Jelena Jankovic to beat Ayumi Morita in 3 sets
Sam Stosur to beat Kimiko Date-Krumm in 2 tight sets
Agnieszka Radwanska to beat Aleksandra Wozniak in 2 sets
Sorana Cirstea to beat Misaki Doi in 3 sets
Ana Ivanovic to beat Elina Svitolina in 2 sets
Flavia Pennetta to beat Caroline Wozniacki in 3 sets
Simona Halep to beat Andrea Petkovic in 3 sets
Magdalena Rybarikova to beat Kirsten Flipkens in 2 tight sets
Dominika Cibulkova to beat Casey Dellacqua in 2 sets
Madison Keys to beat Peng Shuai in 2 tight sets

1 comment:

  1. u missed todays full house prediction by 3....i always come here to compare my predictions....are u on twitter? By the way...ur vacay was damn too on a daily....i kept pray..God let it be that ds nigga has updated his to no avail...i felt u shud have sneaked in one day to at least do ya a point i got mad...i ws like...f*ck it...ds dude doesnt need a vacation..i mean...updatin ds blog shudnt be much of a big deal to him...damn! happy u back...tho i won big today cos i Went with venus...on a separate bet...i didnt want her to cut me...and she impressed!