The Acapulco draw is out… and I got a shock to see who was the first name on it. I break down the draw in this preview, and predict who would be the winner at the end of the tournament.
Correct predictions are in green while wrong predictions are in red
First Quarter – Headlined by (1) Mirjana Lucic-Baroni
Belinda Bencic’s 2017 has been plagued with injuries and having to face top seeds in early encounters, much like her 2016. This time, in Acapulco, she has the play the No.1 seed, Mirjana Lucic-Baroni. I was shocked to see Lucic-Baroni’s name in the draw as I didn’t know she would be participating here and her being the No.1 seed stuns me even more. However, the Croat can be inconsistent and when she starts missing her groundstrokes, BB can definitely take charge. The winner of this match will face an American, either Louisa Chirico or Shelby Rogers, both who had breakout 2016 seasons but nothing noteworthy yet in 2017. The other seed here in Andrea Petkovic, and I’m giving her a chance that she will make her first quarterfinal of the year. However, Nicole Gibbs could certaintly cause an upset in the second round.
Quarter-Finalists: Rogers, Petkovic
Second Quarter – Headlined by (3) Jelena Ostapenko
WTA’s most controversial teenager, Jelena Ostapenko, is the No.3 seed here in Acapulco, even though her rankings has dropped to No.71 after she failed to back up her points in Doha last year. Ostapenko plays Danka Kovinic in the first round and I think there would be no problem for her since Kovinic has been struggling with form. In the second round, she could face Madison Brengle and that could be a problem for her. The Latvian can miss a lot at times when it’s not her day and Brengle can just force those errors out from her. However if it’s Ostapenko’s day, Brengle will be no match for her. The American will have to battle past Annika Beck first if she is to play Ostapenko/Kovinic in the second round. However Beck is coming off a quarterfinal appearance at Budapest. The other German in the draw, Julia Goerges has been doing quite well in singles so far and I think Lesia Tsurenko will be no match for her.
Quarter-Finalists: Ostapenko, Georges
Third Quarter – Headlined by (4) Monica Puig
Olympic Gold medalist Monica Puig has failed to back up her results ever since her Rio endeavours, but seemed back to form after a semifinal appearance at Doha. Puig seemed to be nursing a back injury in Dubai but still managed to reach the third round. I don’t even think No.5 seed McHale can cause problems for Puig. It’s a really good draw for Puig to get into her second semifinal of the year.
Quarter-Finalists: McHale, Puig
Fourth Quarter – Headlined by (2) Kristina Mladenovic
Kristina Mladenovic is one of the hottest players on tour. The Frenchwoman captured her first WTA singles title at St.Petersburg, before beating close friend Karolina Pliskova in Dubai. However there she suffered a shocking loss to Wang Qiang of China. This is a perfect draw for Mladenovic, as none of the players in this quarter are having an impressive year. No.6 seed Eugenie Bouchard reached the quarterfinals in Sydney and a third round appearance in Melbourne Park, and will be hoping for a great result here. I still think Mladenovic will use her power to be able to beat Bouchard, and should be able to make the semis without losing a set.
Quarter-Finalists: Bouchard, Mladenovic
Finalists: Georges, Puig
So that’s it! I’m really looking forward to this week, hopefully you are too 🙂