Tianjin Open Semifinal Predictions: Veronika Kudermetova vs Heather Watson and Ons Jabeur vs Rebecca Peterson

Tianjin Open Heather Watson
Spread the love

The Tianjin Open quarterfinals were certainly a surprise. The #6 Yulia Putintseva, #3 seed Dayana Yastremska, and #8 seed Magda Linette were dismissed in exciting quarterfinal clashes. China’s last remaining contender, Wang Yafan, couldn’t find the answers to Rebecca Peterson.

The last four women in the Tianjin Open are undoubtedly a surprise. Hard-fought wins have landed Ons Jabeur, Rebecca Peterson, Heather Watson, and Veronika Kudermetova in the final four. Here’s a look at the semifinal matchups and our predictions for who will reach the finals.

Tianjin Open Semifinal Predictions

Ons Jabeur vs Rebecca Peterson

Head to head: First meeting

Ons Jabeur hasn’t dropped a set in Tianjin. The Tunisian dismissed #6 seed Yulia Putintseva 7-6, 7-6. Serving a meager 45% of first balls in play and a dismal 39% won on the second delivery, Jabeur’s strength came in the form of returning. The World #61 capitalized on 66% of her break point opportunities. Jabeur has now set up a semifinal clash with Sweden’s Rebecca Peterson. Jabeur will be seeking her second WTA Tour final, after a one year drought. There’s no WTA Tour level history between Jabeur and Peterson. However, Peterson handed Jabeur a 6-2 6-3 loss in an ITF circuit clash in 2018.

Peterson dashed Wang Yafan’s chances for a Chinese victor on home soil. It was a three set battle which saw the Swede emerge the victor, thanks to consistent serving and solid service return. The World #59 broke the Wang serve on six of 11 opportunities. It’s a strong part of the Swede’s game and Jabeur will need to up her first serve percentage if she hopes to reach the final.

I didn’t expect Peterson to survive her opener against Venus Williams. Yet, she battled through a three set bout to exit Williams. Her quarterfinal clash required another three set battle after dropping the first set in a tiebreak. It’s been nothing short of a battle for Peterson to reach the semis, and the Swede looks fully prepared to fight her way through to her second title of 2019.
Prediction: Peterson in 3

Embed from Getty Images

Veronika Kudermetova vs Heather Watson

Head to head: First meeting

Veronika Kudermetova recognized the big moments in her quarterfinal clash with #3 seed Dayana Yastremska. Clearly, the Russian capitalized in those. Serving a low 48% of first balls in play, Kudermetova was able to win 73% behind that weak percentage. It was the break of serve where Kudermetova excelled. Claiming five of seven opportunities led the Russian to a 6-4, 6-0 win, securing her third semifinal appearance of the year.

The Cinderella Story in Tianjin is undoubtedly Heather Watson. Britain’s #2 has reached her first WTA Tour semifinal since January, 2018. Nothing short of remarkable. Watson saved four match points in her three hour plus clash to send off #8 seed Magda Linette. Perhaps Watson has finally flipped a switch and her potential will finally be reached. In fact, Watson has matched her 2019 wins combined, with her wins in Tianjin.

Every single stat lands squarely in Kudermetova’s favor. A statistical analysis would indicate that Kudermeova will win in straight sets. Yet, Heather Watson has a gritty determination that cannot be quantified. This should be another long battle for the Briton. But, one she seems nearly destined to win.
Prediction: Watson in 3

Main Photo:
Embed from Getty Images