Panelists’ Predictions 2016 French Open Women’s Day 7 Matches–Including Serena/Mladenovic

It’s the end of the first week of the French Open and we have more predictions for you. We’re picking the best five matches of Day 7. Joining us to predict today are myself (Yesh Ginsburg) along with LWOS contributors Sam Barker and John Lupo.

Panelists’ Predictions 2016 French Open Women’s Day 7 Matches

Elina Svitolina vs Ana Ivanovic

Sam
Despite these two being seeded I must confess to being surprised that one of them–let alone both–made it this far. Justine Henin’s coaching influence is starting to appear in fleeting glimpses for Svitolina, whilst Ivanovic has been in a slow decline for a number of years now. The Ukrainian may just edge it but it won’t be one for the highlight reel.
Prediction: Svitolina in 3

John
Both players have looked solid in their two wins so far. This is the third straight year they will meet at Roland Garros and while Ivanovic has gotten the better of Svitolina in the two prior matchups, the Ukranian has former French Open champion Justine Henin coaching her and that will be the difference.
Prediction: Svitolina in 3

Yesh
I am a big believer in Ana Ivanovic. She peaked at a very young age and kind of fell apart after that, but she has been slowly working her way back. She’s too talented to not reach the top of the game again. Someday.
Prediction: Ivanovic in 3

Carla Suarez-Navarro vs Dominica Cibulkova

Sam
If there was ever an advert for graceful poise versus brute strength then this match is it. Their contrasting styles should produce a captivating match between two players on the cusp of their best form. Call me biased but I love a one handed backhand and there is none more elegant in the WTA than Suarez Navarro’s.
Predictoin: Suarez-Navarro in 3

John
The Slovakian has won three of the four prior meetings, but none of those were on clay. It’ll be power against craft and in what is the most even third round match on paper, Suarez Navarro should just push through.
Prediction: Suarez-Navarro in 3

Yesh
Power versus finesse. That’s this match. This could go either way, but I have to go with Cibulkova and her perfect head-to-head in this matchup.
Prediction: Cibulkova in 3

Monica Puig vs Madison Keys

Sam
The Puerto Rican holds the bragging rights heading into this one with two previous clay court victories over the erratic American. Keys though has picked up exactly where she left off in Rome, and looks a really dangerous floater in the second quarter of this draw. When her game clicks it is virtually unplayable and right now she is really locked in.
Prediction: Keys in 2

John
Not the first time these two have met here with Puig winning the last time they played on the dirt. Keys has looked solid in the clay court season, but power alone won’t get her through as Puig survived a record performance by Kristyna Pliskova in Australia and Julia Goerges deep into 3rd sets. While the Puerto Rican is playing quite well, I see Keys moving on.
Prediction: Keys in 3

Yesh
Madison Keys is streaky, but she is moving towards being consistent. As she gets older, the consistency will come, and she will be one of the more dangerous players on tour. Fatigue might also come into this late, as Puig played a long and grueling match in her last round.
Prediction: Keys in 3

Venus Williams vs Alize Cornet

Sam
This match will be an understated box office encounter. One of the most popular players of the last two decades will find the crowd firmly against her as the popular yet polarising Cornet demands their support. Cornet survived a heated second round encounter by the skin of her teeth but I think she may run out of legs in this one.
Prediction: Venus Williams in 3

John
The elder Williams sister has looked sharp in Paris so far while Cornet has had to deal with the after effects of her controversial win over Tatjana Maria. This won’t be much of a contest as Venus moves on.
Prediction: Venus Williams in 2

Yesh
My colleagues seem to say that Venus is the way to pick here, and I’m inclined to agree. Cornet isn’t 100% healthy and is probably a bit fatigued from her earlier rounds. Venus can be streaky, especially at this point in her career, but as long as her body holds up she should win this match.
Prediction: Venus Williams in 2

Serena Williams vs Kristina Mladenovic

Sam
I’m struggling to put together any slither of an argument for Mladenovic snatching a set, let alone winning the match. Kiki’s form has been atrocious this year with no less than nine first round exits whilst Serena has looked rampant in the French capital. The defending champion will have to suffer a cataclysmic meltdown to lose this one.
Prediction: Serena Williams in 2

John
The defending champion will have little problem in taking out the talented but streaky Frenchwoman. The pressure of playing the legendary #1 on her home turf plus Williams’ game will simply be too much to overcome. Prediction:
Prediction: Serena Williams in 2

Yesh
There will be absolutely nothing to stop Serena in this match. She is not quite in top form at the moment, but she won’t need it to take out Mladenovic, even though the Frenchwoman is seeded.
Prediction: Serena Williams in 2

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