2018 Roland Garros WTA Round 3 Previews: Siniakova vs Strycova, Keys vs Osaka, Kvitova vs Kontaveit

Second round action from the bottom half of the French Open draw has finally wrapped up and we are rewarded with a couple of tantalising match-ups for Day 6 of the tournament. Read on for third round match previews of Siniakova vs Strycova, Keys vs Osaka and Kvitova vs Kontaveit…

Roland Garros, Third Round

1. Katerina Siniakova (No.54) vs [26] Barbora Strycova (No.26)

Image result for siniakova roland garros 2018

Siniakova has had a good French Open campaign thus far and is into the third round of a Slam for just the second time in her career. Siniakova notched wins over Victoria Azarenka and Ostapenko-slayer Kateryna Kozlova – in both matches she won all of the important points, especially against Azarenka where she increased her level in the latter end of both sets. By virtue of this run, Siniakova is projected to rise back into the world’s top 40 (by live rankings).

Strycova has endured a terrible season outside of the Grand Slams. Coming into the French Open, Strycova was on an eight-match losing streak and was very low in confidence. She would have been relieved to score two confidence-boosting wins over Kurumi Nara and Ekaterina Makarova. The Czech is an extremely experienced player but just like Siniakova, she will be aiming to reach the second week of the French Open for the first time in her career.

Thoughts: I like watching Siniakova a lot but my decision won’t be swayed by my emotions! Siniakova wasted a 4-0 lead in the third set against Kozlova, probably due to nerves, and playing for a spot in the second week of a Slam is a new experience that will definitely instil even more nerves in Siniakova. Strycova’s more solid all-around game should be able bring her to the next round.

Final Prediction: Barbora Strycova d. Katerina Siniakova in three sets

2. [13] Madison Keys (No.13) vs [21] Naomi Osaka (No.20)

Image result for osaka roland garros 2018

Keys vs Osaka is one of my favourite match-ups from the younger generation as they both are aggressive and talented hard-hitting young talents. Though both share a similar game, their seasons couldn’t have been more different this year – Osaka won the biggest title of her career in Indian Wells, while Keys has only reached two quarterfinals all year. During the clay swing Keys has also thrown in a couple of disappointing results, most notably a straight-sets loss to Sara Sorribes Tormo in Madrid.

Thoughts: Keys vs Osaka on the slow and heavy Paris clay is a very interesting match-up. It’s a tough one to predict as both players can have their off days. I’m slightly favouring Osaka, who has notched two solid wins in her last two rounds, to be able to deliver big blows on a more consistent basis.

Final Prediction: Naomi Osaka d. Madison Keys in three sets

3. [8] Petra Kvitova (No.8) vs [25] Anett Kontaveit (No.25)

Image result for kontaveit roland garros 2018

Prepare yourself for more hard-hitting! The two in-form players of the clay court swing, Madrid champion Kvitova wil face off against Stuttgart & Rome semifinalist Kontaveit for a spot in the second week of the French Open. Both players needed to come through three-set battles in their openers before coming through more easily in the next match. Kvitova defeated Cepede Royg and Arruabarrena with 3-6 6-1 7-5 and 6-1 6-4 scores respectively, while Kontaveit notched a 6-1 4-6 6-2 win over Madison Brengle, then a 7-5 6-2 win over Alexandra Dulgheru.

Thoughts: Kontaveit hasn’t really faced a quality player thus far and Kvitova will be a completely different player than her previous two opponents. Kvitova leads the head to head 2-0 and experience should eventually see her through this one.

Thoughts: Petra Kvitova d. Anett Kontaveit in two sets

Thanks for reading! Roland Garros predictions can be found here!

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