WTA Cincinnati Masters Day 3 Predictions Including Madison Keys vs Ons Jabeur

Madison Keys in action ahead of the WTA Cincinnati Masters

There should be plenty of entertaining tennis for fans on day three at the WTA Cincinnati Masters, even if none of them can be there to see it in person due the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. We here at LWOT are offering our predictions for all 14 matches, including Serena Williams vs Arantxa Rus, Petra Kvitova vs Marie Bouzkova and Naomi Osaka vs Karolina Muchova. But who will reach the round of 16?

WTA Cincinnati Masters Day Three Predictions

Christina McHale vs Ekaterina Alexandrova

Head-to-head: first meeting

It has been an excellent week so far for Christina McHale at the WTA Cincinnati Masters. The American began her campaign with a hard fought 6-2 2-6 6-4 win over Usue Maitane Arconada in the first round of qualifying, before beating Daria Kasatkina to secure her place in the main draw. She backed that up with a convincing win over the higher-ranked Iga Swiatek, losing just six games to the pole, to reach the second round in Flushing Meadows.

But there she will face a stern test in the shape of Ekaterina Alexandrova. The Russian upset ninth seed Elena Rybakina in the first round and will surely be full of confidence heading into this clash. Both women look to play the majority of their tennis from the baseline, with Alexandrova the more adept at seizing the initiative. Her backhand down the line is a particularly effective weapon. This should be a close contest, but Alexandrova’s ability to hit winners should be the difference.

Prediction: Alexandrova in 2
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Kristina Mladenovic vs Elise Mertens

Head-to-head: Mladenovic 3-1 Mertens

Elise Mertens, after a disappointing return to action in Palermo where she lost in the first round to Aliaksandra Sasnovich, got back to winning ways with a run to the final at the Prague Open. She maintained that fine form with a convincing 6-0 6-2 win over Rebecca Peterson in the first round at the WTA Cincinnati Masters. However, she has enjoyed little success against her second-round opponent Kristina Mladenovic, winning just one of their four previous matches.

The Frenchwoman delivered an impressive performance herself, beating former-US Open semifinalist Anastasija Sevastova in straight sets to book her spot in the round of 32. But whilst she does boast a fine record against Mertens, this will be their first meeting since 2018, with their careers having diverged in the interim. Mertens is that much more accurate and consistent off the ground and that should give her the decisive edge.

Prediction: Mertens in 3
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Madison Keys vs Ons Jabeur

Head-to-head: first meeting

After a spate of upsets on day two at the WTA Cincinnati Masters, the draw has opened up considerably, something Madison Keys will doubtless be looking to take advantage of. But the American, who has not played competitively since the Australian Open, has been handed a tough opening assignment in Flushing Meadows in the shape of Ons Jabeur, who is enjoying the finest season of her career and last week reached the quarterfinals at the Top Seed Open in Lexington.

She opened her campaign with a comeback win over Leylah Annie Fernandez of Canada, recovering from losing the first set to win 0-6 6-4 6-3. But Keys does have an excellent record in New York, where she reached the final in 2017 and the last four a year later, and the courts at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center appear to suit her aggressive approach. Jabeur has the quality to really test her, but this is a match that a player of Keys’ quality should be winning.

Prediction: Keys in 3

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