Apia International Sydney Predictions
Day 6 – Sydney Predictions
Kvitova d. Barty in three sets – Barty vs Bertens was a really high quality battle and it’s great to see Barty in full flow, especially with her chip and charge tactics. Similarly, Kvitova has been absolutely stunning in her two matches and in this kind of form it’s really hard to stop her. Question is, can she recuperate having played over midnight in her match with Sasnovich? Kvitova is usually unstoppable at the latter end of the tournament (25-7 record in finals) so I’m going to give her the benefit of the doubt…
Day 5 – Sydney Predictions
Barty d. Bertens in three sets – Barty leads the head to head 2-0, with their last meeting coming in Montreal last year. Haven’t watched any of Bertens’ matches this week but she has been really reliable in the last year or so when beating players she is expected to defeat. Same goes for Barty, who is having a great week so far having beaten No.1 Halep in the second round here. Not really sure what to expect from this one but the home support and variety from Barty could frustrate Bertens a lot.
Kvitova d. Sasnovich in two sets – This one mostly depends on whether Kvitova can bring her best level to the table after a superb win over Kerber. Kvitova in two or Sasnovich in three – after Kvitova’s victory, I’m going towards the former…
Day 4 – Sydney Predictions
Barty d. Mertens in three sets
Kerber d. Kvitova in three sets
Sasnovich d. Bacsinszky in three sets
Bertens d. Putintseva in two sets
Day 3 – Sydney Predictions
Halep d. Barty in three sets – Barty has lost her last seven of eight matches against top ten opposition, with two of them coming against Halep as the Romanian leads the head to head 2-0. This will be Halep’s first match of the year and there’ll definitely be a lot of rust considering she hasn’t had a completed match since Wuhan last year due to injuries. Don’t know what to expect from Halep so it’s a huge upset alert, but I’m not sure if Barty will have the nerves to come through eventually.
Stephens d. Putintseva in three sets – The pair will be meeting for the third time where the head to head is tied at one win apiece. Both matches have been rollercoaster three-set matches so I expect this one to be very similar. Stephens survived a crazy three-setter against Alexandrova in the first round and she should be slightly more settled down after a first win of the year. This one likely all depends on whether Stephens can get her footwork going… I think she barely edges through this one.
Bacsinszky d. Stosur in two sets – Seriously NO IDEA what to expect from this one… Don’t know why but I’m going with Bacsinszky…
Sasnovich d. Hon in two sets – Hon has a decent baseline game but Sasnovich just does a little everything better than her opponent. Sasnovich has had a great start the year and she’ll likely be able to continue her bright form here.
Kvitova d. Hsieh in three sets – Kvitova played supremely well against Sabalenka in the first round but with the Czech, you just don’t know what you’re going to get from her. If she’s not in form then Hsieh’s trickery will definitely drive her crazy. However Hsieh can struggle to deal with massive power from her opponent, so I won’t be surprised either if a mediocre level from the Czech will barely get her through this one.
Day 2 – Sydney Predictions
Sabalenka d. Kvitova in three sets – Surprised yet not surprised too that Sabalenka’s playing in Sydney after her run to the title in Shenzhen. Sabalenka’s level since the first round in Shenzhen has been sky high and I think she’ll be able to bring that form for the early rounds in Sydney. Kvitova wasn’t convincing in Brisbane and she never really seems to bring her best tennis to Australia in recent years. Going for the ‘upset’.
Barty d. Ostapenko in two sets – Wrote in my ‘Weekly Awards’ post about how Ostapenko was the disappointment of the first week and I really hope that she won’t produce anything even more worse in this one! I don’t think it’s a good match-up for Ostapenko as Barty has all the slices and drop shots in her weaponry to disturb the Latvian.
Kerber d. Giorgi in three sets – Kerber leads the head to head 3-0, but this is never an easy match-up for any player as Giorgi never provides you with any rhythm in the way she blows hot and cold. You never know what to expect from the Italian but I won’t be surprised if she manages to grab a set in this one. Ultimately, Kerber’s more consistent play should come up tops in the end.
Stephens d. Alexandrova in three sets – Not an easy one for Sloane who started the season with a straight-set loss to Konta in Brisbane. Alexandrova has huge weapons (with little consistency though) and if Stephens’ footwork is slightly lacklustre, Alexandrova could easily move Stephens from side-to-side and nab a set. I’d say Stephens’ edges this one out eventually but it’s pretty much a 50-50 match.
Sasnovich d. Kasatkina in two sets – Kasatkina has said that she’s been working with her coach on some new things so I won’t be surprised if she starts off the new season poorly. Sasnovich is a very competent opponent and has started the year on a high, reaching the quarterfinals in Brisbane and qualifying for the main draw here. Sasnovich’s variety and smart play could definitely cause a lot of problems for Kasatkina in this one.
Kontaveit d. Puig in three sets – Pretty much a 50-50 match as both players are so streaky on the court. Have a little more faith in Kontaveit though to get this one.
Maria d. Hon in three sets – Maria’s variety for the win.
Hsieh d. Collins in two sets – A peak and focused Hsieh will definitely be the death of Collins as the latter won’t be able to play her game with the variety that’s coming at her. This one in my opinion depends on Hsieh’s level and I think she can do it…
Mertens d. Siniakova in three sets – Both players lost in the first round of Brisbane though Siniakova has had two matches afterwards in Sydney to qualify for the main draw. It’s obvious what you’re going to get from this one – peak flashes of brilliance from Mertens but mostly solid groundstrokes, and Siniakova constantly blowing between hot and cold with her game. This one depends on whether Siniakova’s able to finish of the rallies with her more superior power. Predicting Mertens’ more solid base level to come through eventually though.
Day 1 – Sydney Predictions (RIP PREDICTIONS)
Tomljanovic d. Giorgi in three sets – Battle of the hard-hitters! Tomljanovic played well in Brisbane where she reached the quarterfinals, eventually losing to eventual champion Pliskova in three sets. I’d give Tomljanovic the edge here as she has already a few matches under her belt and is looking steady and focused to begin the year.
Cibulkova d. Stosur in two sets – Stosur leads the head to head 5-2, however Cibulkova has won their past two match-ups in the last two years. Not surprised that Cibulkova has struggled in this match-up before with Stosur’s kick serve a crucial weapon. However, the Australian generally plays terribly in Australia, and hasn’t been able to pick up any form since the 2017 French Open. Even though this is Cibulkova’s first match of the year, I have to go with the Slovakian in this one.
Suarez Navarro d. Muguruza in three sets – This match deserves a full match preview but unfortunately there’s no time! Muguruza went 1-2 in singles in Hopman Cup, before withdrawing from her final doubles match due to injury. Suarez Navarro comprehensively lost in straights to Kontaveit in Brisbane after getting completely overpowered. Muguruza wasn’t at her best in Perth and other than the serve (which looks good), other parts of her game still look rusty and her footwork wasn’t really looking good. Suarez Navarro should be able to put in a more improved and more solid display than Muguruza.
Gavrilova d. Putintseva in three sets – This match could be all sorts of craziness! Putintseva leads the head to head 3-0, but they haven’t played since 2013. Both have very similar strengths and weaknesses (especially mental fragility!) so this is a tough one to call. Siding with the home player I guess?
Sevastova d. Bacsinszky in two sets – A tough ask for Bacsinszky against a very focused Sevastova in Brisbane. Her tricky best should be way too much for the returning Bacsinsky to handle.