US Open Women’s Day 1 Predictions Including Karolina Pliskova vs Anhelina Kalinina

WTA Finals Karolina Pliskova

The US Open begins on Monday. Our panelists here at LWOT are ready to predict matches for you. In this strangest of Grand Slam tournaments due to COVID-19, anything can happen. Each set of predictions looks at four matches. In addition to this set, we have five others for you to look at. One features Naomi Osaka vs Misaki Doi, another looks at Danielle Collins vs Anett Kontaveit, the next headlines Angelique Kerber vs Ajla-Tomljanovic, another headlines Petra Kvitova vs Irina Camelia-Begu, and the last features Coco Gauff vs Anastasija Sevastova. Predicting this set of matches are Tracey Essex, Ewan West, and Jim Smith.

US Open Women’s Day 1 Predictions

Caroline Dolehide vs Anna-Lena Friedsam

Tracey:
Friedsam will be looking for a different outcome from last year’s US Open, where she fell in qualifying rounds to Dolehide. I don’t expect Dolehide will have a deep run, but she’ll see the second round. It’s really doubles where the American shines.
Prediction: Dolehide in 2

Ewan:
Dolehide won the pair’s only previous encounter in straight sets in the final round of qualifying for last year’s US Open. Neither player have won a senior US Open match. The lower-ranked American won three qualifying matches across Lexington and Cincinnati, which could give her the edge.
Prediction: Dolehide in 3

Jim:
Friedsam looked less than impressive in losing 5-7 0-6 in the first round of qualifying at the Western and Southern Open and she could well end up struggling again here. Dolehide did also fail to make it into the main draw last week, but she did at least win a round. Expect a tight contest, but for the American to come out on top.
Prediction: Dolehide in 3

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Kristina Mladenovic vs Hailey Baptiste

Tracey:
This match between two players at very different points in their careers should go the distance. Baptiste’s big serve and heavy top spin will challenge Mladenovic. Yet, the Frenchwoman’s experience will give her the edge.
Prediction: Mladenovic in 3

Ewan:
Promising 18-year-old wild card Baptiste lost to Mladenovic in three sets in the second round of Washington last year, her only other WTA-level appearance to date. In Cincinnati, Mladenovic earned a win against Anastasija Sevastova before falling to eventual semi-finalist Elise Mertens. The 2015 US Open quarter-finalist should win, but might be pushed again.
Prediction: Mladenovic in 3

Jim:
Mladenovic remains frustratingly inconsistent, but she did play some good tennis in beating Anastasija Sevastova in the first round at the Western and Southern Open, before running into an in-form Elise Mertens. Her variety and power should give her the decisive edge against the inexperienced Baptiste.
Prediction: Mladenovic in 3

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Elena Rybakina vs Katarina Zavatska

Tracey:
Rybakina started 2020 on a tear – unstoppable. Her powerful serve and clean ball striking catapulted her up the rankings. There’s little which can stop the Kazakh in getting through her opener. I expect we’ll see a deep run for Rybakina.
Prediction: Rybakina in 2

Ewan:
Rybakina lost to Ekaterina Alexandrova in a tight two-setter in Cincinnati, her first match since February. She beat Zavatska in their only previous meeting–a 2018 ITF match in Brescia–and should again beat a player making her Grand Slam debut.
Prediction: Rybakina in 2

Jim:
Rybakina, who was so impressive in the early weeks of the season, lost in the first round on her return to action last week, but she was handed an exceedingly tough first-round draw against Ekaterina Alexandrova. She should have an easier time of it against Zavatska.
Prediction: Rybakina in 2

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Karolina Pliskova vs Anhelina Kalinina

Tracey:
This has to be such a disappointing opener for Ukraine’s Anhelina Kalinina. Certainly, Karolina Pliskova can experience some let downs, momentary lapses, or a serve which just can’t find its mark. Yet, I see no scenario in which Kalinina can upset the #1 seed.
Prediction: Pliskova in 2

Ewan:
Pliskova suffered a surprising second round loss to Veronika Kudermetova at Cincinnati. The top seed should be too strong, though, for WTA #145 Kalinina, who is playing in just her second Grand Slam main draw and has never cracked the top 100.
Prediction: Pliskova in 2

Jim:
Pliskova’s return to action at the Western and Southern Open did not go to plan as she lost in her first match. But it’s hard to see her falling at the first hurdle again at the US Open. Her opponent Kalinina has relatively little experience of tennis at this level, despite reaching the second round in New York two years ago as a qualifier. Expect the Czech to prove too strong.
Prediction: Pliskova in 2

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