Day three at Miami sees some of the bigger names looking to make an early statement about their title intentions. For world #38 Johanna Konta and world #46 Victoria Azarenka, they are looking to end title droughts and rediscover form that has recently been fading away. Both are in action on day three, along with other intriguing ties, here’s a selection of them:
Caroline Garcia vs Victoria Azarenka
Head-to-head: Caroline Garcia 1-0 Victoria Azarenka
There was more than a hint in Dubai that out-of-sorts French player Caroline Garcia was on the right road towards returning to the blistering form shown at the end of 2017. However, back-to-back defeats against the consistent Jennifer Brady, leaves you wondering where her level is truly at?
Similar thoughts are possible about Belorussian Victoria Azarenka. Azarenko bossed compatriot Vera Lapko last week in Indian Wells, but never really landed a blow against a below par Serena Williams. Azarenka struggled with serve a tad in the first round in Miami beating Cibulkova 6-2, 3-6, 6-4. The Belorussian was only 58% on first serves and gave up 12 break points. She can tighten this blip up, and will need to against Garcia, but she looks the more likely winner of this match-up.
Prediction: Azarenka in three
Yafan Wang vs Kristina Mladenovic
There’s an obvious form choice here, with Wang collecting the Mexican Open a few weeks back. The Chinese star is one of thirteen different title winners this year. That said, there has been an uplift in how Mladenovic carries herself on court, she is more positive, suggesting a return to form is not far away. She could sneak this one.
Prediction: Mladenovic in three
Dalila Jakupovic vs Venus Williams
Venus Williams was an enigma in Indian Wells last week. She looked down and out in her first round match against Andrea Petkovic, losing the second set 6-0. She did not look as though if she sat down in the breaks during the third set that she’d be able to get back up, but she did. Under-estimate the older Williams sibling at your peril.
Prediction: Venus Williams in three
Johanna Konta vs Jessica Pegula
Konta is coming back to the boil. She should continue the good form she showed even in close defeat in Indian Wells last week at this tournament she won in 2017. The 25 year old Buffalo born home country player Jessica Pegula, Konta can get into a serving groove and attack that two handed backhand of Pegula’s that can be a tad predictable at times.
Prediction: Konta in two