BNP Paribas Open Indian Wells Predictions
Day 9 – Indian Wells Predictions
Andreescu vs Svitolina – Preview & Prediction
Bencic vs Kerber – Preview & Prediction
Day 8 – Indian Wells Predictions
Bencic d. Ka.Pliskova in three sets – Sky is the limit for Bencic at the moment who’s on an 11-match winning streak and just can’t lose, defeating Osaka 3 & 1 for her second win against a World No.1. She’s serving well, returning supremely, full of confidence… but can she find a way to hit past the solid Ka.Pliskova? Ka.Pliskova has reached the fourth round at Indian Wells for five straight years and amasses an impressive 18-7 win-loss record at the desert. She’s had a tough route to the quarters this year though, needing three sets to defeat Misaki Doi and Anett Kontaveit. Pliskova’s played decent this week but the confident Bencic is a step higher with her stellar movement and striking at the moment. I’m going for the Bencic train to continue rolling on.
Kerber d. V.Williams in three sets – Looking forward to this one! Kerber leads the head to head 5-3, with Kerber winning their recent meeting, 5-7 6-3 6-1 in Sydney. Both Kerber and Venus haven’t been in vintage form this week but it’s been their fight and grit that has brought them to this stage. After ruthlessly dismantling Putintseva, Kerber struggled against the power hitters in Vikhlyantseva and Sabalenka, while Venus laboured past Petkovic but put in two good performances against Kvitova and Barthel. Torn with this one but going for Kerber’s counter-punching and defensive skills to stop the Williams’ resurgence.
Day 7 – Indian Wells Predictions
Muguruza d. Andreescu in three sets – Muguruza played one of her best matches for a long while, coming forward convincingly and striking her forehand well (at least from the measly highlights I saw!). It was Muguruza’s first completed match win against a top ten player since February last year and it will definitely boost her confidence after a mediocre season thus far. She’s the favourite in this one but she’s coming up against a red-hot player in Andreescu. The Canadian is so confident at the moment and has so many assets to her game. This could be a fun one with Muguruza’s baseline striking and Andreescu’s all court game, but going with the former here with Andreescu playing probably the biggest match of her career here.
Svitolina d. Vondrousova in three sets – Both played exhausting three-setters, especially Svitolina who played the longest match of the season thus far against Barty. It was such a physically exhausting match in the tricky conditions so I bet it’ll have taken much out of Svitolina. Vondrousova will be playing her second straight top ten player, and will need to play aggressively as she did last year to not allow Svitolina to take the front foot. Nonetheless, with Vondrousova so young and can succumb to nerves at times, going with the ‘veteran’ to win here.
Day 6 – Indian Wells Predictions
V.Williams d. McHale in two sets – Venus played pretty well against Kvitova and I expect her to keep it going against McHale who doesn’t have too many weapons to counter attack if Venus is playing good.
Osaka d. Collins in two sets – Osaka put in a much improved display against Mladenovic in her opener. Osaka just does a little everything better than Collins and even though the latter will be determined to play well in front of a home crowd, I’m still going for the World No.1.
Kerber d. Vikhlyantseva in two sets – A first time match-up. Didn’t get to watch Kerber’s win against Putintseva (shame on me) but it seemed that she played really aggressively and accurately. Vikhlyantseva has power but it should be a good match-up for Kerber as she can redirect the pace and exploit Vikhlyantseva’s movement.
Sevastova d. Kontaveit in three sets – One of the rather low-key third round match-ups of the day but it should be a good match with the two contrasting styles. Going for Sevastova, who can definitely trouble Kontaveit with her variety and should be able to perform better amidst the tricky conditions in the desert.
Ka.Pliskova d. Bonaventure in two sets – Bonaventure’s gotten quite a couple of solid wins this year, but going with Pliskova’s supreme consistency and great history in Indian Wells to come through here.
Goerges d. Barthel in two sets – All German match-up! While both have similar games, don’t see Barthel having the consistency to constantly hit through Goerges in rallies. Expecting a rather comfortable victory for Goerges.
Bencic d. Alexandrova in three sets – Alexandrova scored a great win against Wozniacki which really was surprising with her lack of ability to serve out sets and matches. It won’t be shocking to see her keep this up against Bencic who can struggle a little against hard-hitters. Nonetheless Bencic is on form at the moment and her consistency should come through here.
Day 5 – Indian Wells Predictions
Halep d. Kozlova in two sets – Halep looked good against Strycova. Don’t see her having problems here.
Muguruza vs S.Williams – Preview & Prediction
Barty d. Brady in three sets – Brady’s been hitting a good ball lately and I feel her hard and kicking groundstrokes could cause some issues for Barty. Ultimately, I think Barty’s more consistent play, experience and slice should help her to secure the win in a battle.
Bertens d. Konta in three sets – Even though 38 spots separate them in the world rankings, this one feels pretty much 50-50. Konta’s been slowly finding back her form but still hasn’t gotten that big win that gets everyone looking; I won’t be surprised that it comes here, but I’m still edging towards Bertens because I’ve been impressed with her week-to-week consistency and Konta will need to maintain an aggressive edge throughout the whole match to be able to hit through Bertens constantly.
Svitolina vs Gavrilova – Preview & Prediction
Mertens d. Q.Wang in three sets – I haven’t watched too many Mertens matches this year but her win against Anisimova IMO was one of the best of 2019. I always felt Mertens was trying to force herself to play more aggressively of late, which is definitely not her game, but against Anisimova she balanced between attack and defense so well, and was always able to frustrate Anisimova with her anticipation skills. With that, I’m going for her to beat Wang, who has a similar game but is just playing her second tournament since coming back from injury.
Ostapenko d. Vondrousova in three sets – I don’t know where Ostapenko’s at right now. She was crying during the changeovers in Dubai, but was so happy and cheery in a demolition job of Zhang a couple of days back. Vondrousova’s a good young player but the match still should be on Ostapenko’s racket. No one knows which side of Penko will come out so I’ve no idea who gets this one. Alona maybe?
Andreescu d. Voegele in two sets – One of the shocks of the fortnight was Voegele’s upset of Stephens with the loss of just three games. Andreescu’s on fire right now though and I don’t see the Swiss’ run continuing on.
Day 4 – Indian Wells Predictions
Kvitova vs V.Williams – Preview & Prediction
Osaka d. Mladenovic in two sets – So Osaka’s first two opponents since becoming World No.1: Kiki Mladenovic & Kiki Mladenovic again! After a terrible 3-6 3-6 loss to Mladenovic in Dubai, can Osaka turn the tide around? She’s now with Jamere Jenkins, her new head coach that has affiliations with the Williams sisters so it’ll be interesting to see where this partnership goes. Going with Osaka to exact her revenge here.
Kerber d. Putintseva in three sets – The last time Kerber and Putintseva met, it was back in 2010(!!!) where Kerber came through, 6-3 6-1. Expecting this to be way closer with Kerber’s torrid form and Putintseva finding some confidence right now. I watched Kerber’s matches during the Middle East swing and well, the confidence and power is completely not there. This is definitely an upset alert considering how Kerber likes pace and Putintseva absolutely gives you none of that and messes up opponent’s rhythm with her buckets of variety and terrible misses at times. Kerber has never been able to play her best tennis in Indian Wells but nonetheless going with her experience to come through. This match definitely has potential to be the mess of the century.
Keys d. Barthel in three sets – Another potential upset alert right here with Keys playing her first match since Fed Cup in America, losing to Ashleigh Barty there. You never know what to expect from Keys or Barthel so a complete toss-up here. Keys I suppose?
Wozniacki d. Alexandrova in two sets – Wozniacki withdrew from Doha and Dubai with illness, and thus hasn’t played since the Australian Open, which is nonetheless surprising knowing how much she likes to play! Alexandrova has power but her inability to win the big points and close out matches has been a key factor of her underachieving career. Going with Wozniacki here.
Sabalenka vs Tomljanovic – Preview & Prediction
Ka.Pliskova d. Doi in two sets – Pliskova leads the head to head 5-2, but they haven’t met since 2016. Doi’s confidence has really fallen apart since then but she’s definitely coming back. Still, Pliskova for the win.
Sevastova d. Brengle in two sets – The last time they met was back in 2008! All depends on Sevastova on this one, whether she can keep her emotions in check. Sevastova in 2.
Flipkens d. Collins in three sets – Mmm, not sure about this one. Flipkens played great against Bouchard. Flipkens to win a tough one I guess.
Kanepi d. Goerges in three sets – Siding with the upset here. Other than a title in Auckland, Goerges hasn’t played really well this season. Kanepi can really strike the ball and she’s already played a match to get used to the conditions.
Puig d. Kontaveit in three sets – Another battle of the hard-hitters. Both players are equally inconsistent and you just don’t know what to expect from them. No basis to this pick of Puig winning here.
Bencic d. Van Uytvanck in two sets – Bencic’s first match since winning the title in Dubai. I think she’ll do well here to secure the win.
Vekic d. Bonaventure in two sets – Both Vekic and Bonaventure have been playing well this season; going with Vekic’s killer instincts to secure the win.
Pavlyuchenkova d. McHale in three sets – Pavlyuchenkova’s always dangerous as the underdog but when she isn’t, she’s always prone to such kind of shocking losses. She does lead the head to head 5-1 and I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt to get the win.
Suarez Navarro d. Vikhlyantseva in three sets – Suarez Navarro’s been just OK this season and this is exactly the type of player she’ll lose too. Vikhlyantseva has the groundstrokes but nerves has always been an issue. Going for Suarez Navarro’s experience to just come through.
Tsurenko d. Pegula in three sets – Another potential messy match on paper. Tsurenko for the win.
Day 3 – Indian Wells Predictions
Muguruza d. Davis in two sets – Muguruza hasn’t been great at all this year, but I doubt she’ll be that bad to lose against Davis, right…?
Stephens d. Voegele in three sets – Voegele actually leads the head to head 4-1, though four of those five meetings had taken place earlier than 2013. Voegele is definitely a player that can cause Stephens problems with her raw power, especially when Stephens is lacking motivation and confidence. Not sure if Voegele can close the match if she has a chance to do so though, and the slow conditions in Indian Wells should only help Stephens’ cause.
S.Williams d. Azarenka in two sets – Obviously the match of the day in Indian Wells. Serena leads the head to head 17-4, with Azarenka winning their previous encounter, three years back in the final here. Azarenka has been playing a little better in February but is still way off the level from her good old days and Serena is always up for such kind of big matches. Serena hasn’t played since the Australian Open but she should be able to shake off the rust and get the straight-set win.
Halep d. Strycova in two sets – Halep leads the head to head 4-1, and has won their last four meetings. Halep is a former champion in Indian Wells and even with the slow court surface, still should be able to hit through Strycova who hasn’t been playing well of late.
Svitolina d. Kenin in three sets – Intrigued by this one. Kenin has been playing great this year and has a 14-5 win-loss record but will be coming up against just her second top ten player of the season. I wonder if she has enough weapons to hit through Svitolina, who has been playing OK this year but still just lacking a little spark. I think Kenin will be the aggressor in this one but the slow courts should help Svitolina to come through this one in a hard fought battle.
Brady d. Garcia in three sets – Brady has already beaten Garcia twice this year, so can she get a third victory? I wouldn’t be surprised. Garcia hasn’t been great since 2018 and Brady has had a 15-5 win-loss record this season. Going for the upset.
Zhang d. Ostapenko in two sets – If Garcia’s been playing bad this year, Ostapenko is probably even worse so far. Her serving was so bad in Dubai and was even in tears during one of the changeovers. I don’t see her being able to turn her fortunes here, against a solid player in Zhang and on a slow court like in Indian Wells.
Anisimova d. Mertens in three sets – A first time match-up which could be fun with Anisimova’s raw power and talent against Mertens’ defensive skills and counter-punching. Mertens has a title to her name this year but otherwise hasn’t been really impressed with her level this season, and hard-hitters like Anisimova is definitely the type of player she doesn’t like to play. I think Anisimova will come through in a real battle.
Bertens d. Linette in two sets – Expecting Bertens to come through here as she does everything a little better than Linette.
Barty d. Maria in two sets – Barty leads the head to head 3-0. Maria has the tricky slices, but Barty has that and then some more as well. Barty should be way too strong here.
Andreescu d. Cibulkova in three sets – A rather obvious upset pick, with Andreescu amassing 22 wins this season, compared to Cibulkova’s one! Cibulkova really has tried to cut down her schedule this season and is coming into this with barely any form. If Andreescu can put it all together I think she can definitely use her bag of tricks to hit through Cibulkova.
Vondrousova d. Kasatkina in three sets – This is a huge tournament for Kasatkina who’s defending finalist points and is having a miserable 2019 so far. She’s 1-5 for the season and looks drained on confidence right now, and has also decided to split with coach DeHaes. Vondrousova is not an easy opponent at all and she seems to be getting back her game after a rollercoaster 2018 season. Have to go for the upset here.
Hsieh d. Konta in three sets – Not sure about this one? Hsieh has variety to make Konta crazy but Konta also has the flat groundstrokes to hit through Hsieh. Hsieh’s been playing brilliant this season and edging towards her to get the better of Konta.
Gavrilova d. Buzarnescu in three sets – Happy for Gavrilova who finally snapped her seven-match losing streak against the in-form Yastremska. Buzarnescu is another player who’s having a terrible season (1-8 win-loss record) and her only win came against Gavrilova in Acapulco! I think Gavrilova’s scrappiness will prevail on the slow court in Indian Wells.
Sasnovich d. Kozlova in three sets – Don’t know what to expect from Sasnovich who has picked up 11 wins this season, but also has been on the receiving end of a ton of bagels! I think this one will depend mostly on Sasnovich’s level. Sasnovich to come through in an exhausting three-setter.
Q.Wang d. Pera in three sets – Tough to predict as Wang just came back from injury and played the Indian Wells 125K tournaments, losing to Golubic in the semis. Think she’ll be a tad more solid than Pera though.
Day 2 – Indian Wells Selected Predictions
V.Williams d. Petkovic in three sets – Venus really needs a deep run in Indian Wells as she’s defending semifinal points here. Neither Venus or Petkovic have been really convincing in their matches this year so hard to decide on this one. Edging towards Williams on a hard court and on home soil though.
Flipkens d. Bouchard in two sets – Surprised this is a first time match-up. Typically Bouchard will be the one in control of this match but don’t think this is a good match-up for her with the variety Flipkens possesses.
Zheng d. Mladenovic in three sets – This sounds like it’ll be a very messy match, especially on a slow court like Indian Wells. I think Zheng will resort to moonballs and it will depend whether Mladenovic can handle all the variety from Zheng. Again, not sure about this one with both having inconsistent gamestyles. Going with Zheng’s superior defensive skills on a slow court to come through though.
Tomljanovic d. Cornet in three sets – Another one of those tough match-ups to predict. Cornet has the variety and experience, while Tomljanovic has the power to hit through many players. I’m actually going for Tomljanovic to win because I’ve been impressed with her performances this year, even if she can have that wobble or two during a match.
Sakkari d. McHale in two sets – Laughing at this match-up – it could be a complete mess. McHale has fallen outside of the world’s top 100 but has done OK this year to amass a 11-5 win-loss record but I doubt she can find a way to hit through Sakkari, especially if the latter gets into lockdown mode. I think the slow conditions in Indian Wells should suit Sakkari.
Stosur d. Brengle in three sets – Another potentially messy match-up. Stosur does lead the head to head 3-0 and she’s a match-up driven player. Even with her tendency to take the scenic route in matches, I’d have to go for her in this one.
Riske d. Van Uytvanck in two sets – Riske has brought a great level to her matches this year and has amassed a 10-6 win-loss record. I think she thrives under a home crowd and she should do well to get the win against Van Uytvanck.
Day 1 – Indian Wells Selected Predictions
Konta d. Parmentier in two sets – Konta leads the head 3-1 having won their last three match-ups. I don’t see Parmentier causing too many issues to Konta’s groundstrokes game but Konta is so inconsistent on the tour nowadays… Still going for Konta in 2.
Anisimova d. Krunic in two sets – Anisimova has been so impressive on the tour in the last year and this is where it started, beating Pavlyuchenkova and Kvitova enroute to a fourth round run. Her last match on tour was a retirement in Acapulco so some injury issues but I doubt Krunic can trouble the American. We’ve seen flashes of her brilliance but it can rarely be sustained over a week, let alone a year, and hasn’t been able to play her game since winning the WTA title in ‘s-Hertogenbosch. Anisimova’s forceful groundstrokes should be way too much for an erratic, Krunic.
Kenin d. Y.Wang in three sets – The pair just met last week in the Acapulco final where Wang came through in a rollercoaster in three sets. Don’t know what to expect from Wang after a milestone win and Kenin’s such a huge fighter that she’ll definitely be eager for some revenge. Kenin seems to thrive under a home crowd so ultimately edging towards the American.
Pera d. McNally in three sets – McNally beat Kr.Pliskova and Bacsinszky enroute to the main draw which isn’t too shabby. Won’t be surprised to see her snag a set off the inconsistent Pera but ultimately Pera’s experience should come through.
Azarenka d. Lapko in three sets – Always been fond of Lapko’s game but she’s on a five-match losing streak and only has one win to her name this year. She’ll be playing Azarenka though and will be eager to prove her mettle. Azarenka has had an equally tough year, looking drained of confidence and totally vulnerable on court, especially on he forehand and serve. She looked a little better though in Acapulco and she always plays well in Indian Wells so I’ll expect her to get that win.
Schmiedlova d. Davis in three sets – The battle of the shorties! Both players are those who experienced breakthroughs but fell apart afterwards – Schmiedlova had an amazing 2015 but completely crumbled in 2016, while Davis was one of the hottest players on the tour during the first quarter of 2017 but has since faded. Schmiedlova seems more on her way on her comeback trail right now and I’d fancy her to be too solid for Davis. Nonetheless, I wouldn’t be surprised if Davis’ more aggressive game comes through though.
Andreescu d. Begu in two sets – This pick seems a little too obvious as both players have had contrasting seasons so far. Andreescu has had 19 wins in 2019, while Begu is lingering at 6, without a victory against a top 50 player this season. I was so impressed with Andreescu having seen her in Acapulco. She really has all the shots in the bag including a solid net game, which many young players lack right now. There can definitely be inconsistencies with her colourful game but Begu is definitely worse in that consistency compartment. Andreescu in 2.
Martic d. Linette in two sets – I think Linette could get bogged down in the web of Martic’s topspin game and her game is way too inconsistent to cause any problems from the Croatian. It’ll take an on-form Linette to do so, which is rare…
Golubic d. Strycova in three sets – Golubic’s on a seven-match winning streak after claiming the Indian Wells 125K title and successfully qualifying for the MD here. Golubic’s has always showed flashes of her spectacular game but sustaining a high level throughout a whole week has always been a issue. Strycova definitely used to excel in that but has been a shadow of her former self this year – she hasn’t beaten a top 50 player since September. Golubic’s a huge confidence player and I’d fancy her to get that win unless fatigue starts getting to her.
Yastremska d. Gavrilova in two sets – These two players couldn’t be more different in their confidence level at the moment. Yastremska claimed her second WTA title in Hua Hin in February, while Gavrilova is 0-5 to start the season and the serve is as shaky as usual. On paper Yastremska takes this and I have to side with the younger player, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see Gavrilova’s scrappy defence to cause some issues for the Ukrainian. We’re talking about the unpredictable WTA here!
Vondrousova d. Siegemund in three sets – This could be fun. Both players rely on variety and superior defensive skills than brute power to win matches. I think Vondrousova’s more lethal forehand and game could help her edge this one as Siegemund hasn’t been able to play well on hard courts since her comeback.
Rybarikova d. Maria in three sets – Surprised this is a first time match-up as both of them are veterans. Both have very similar games but Rybarikova has the slight edge in power and groundstrokes. A toss-up but going with Rybarikova.