US Open Day 2 Women’s Predictions Including Victoria Azarenka vs Barbara Haas

Day 2 of the US Open sees the first round wrap up on Tuesday. We at LWOT are predicting as many of the matches as we can. In fact, we’re predicting 28 of the day’s 32 scheduled matches. Each set of predictions looks at four matches. That means that we have six more sets in addition to this one. One features Iga Swiatek vs Veronika Kudermetova, another headlines Amanda Anisimova vs Viktoriya Tomova, the next features Venus Williams vs Karolina Muchova, one looks at Serena Williams vs Kristie Ahn, another headlines Johanna Konta vs Heather Watson, and the last features Kim Clijsters vs Ekaterina Alexandrova. Predicting this set of matches are Tracey Essex, Jim Smith, and Damian Kust.

US Open Day 2 Women’s Predictions

Kristyna Pliskova vs Donna Vekic

Tracey:
Pliskova is good form, coming off a dream run in Prague. Yet, this will be the Czech’s first hard court tournament since Doha in February 2020. This surface seems to challenge Pliskova’s movement, requiring her to use big hitting and big serving to keep her opponents at bay. Yet, Pliskova’s weak movement may well be the deficiency the struggling Vekic exploits to gain a foothold in this match. If Vekic can find some rhythm and take away Pliskova’s court position, she can find her way to the second round.
Prediction: Vekic in 3

Jim:
Pliskova is a dangerous opponent when she is on song. But the Czech has never managed to match her twin sister’s consistency. Vekic, meanwhile, continues to underachieve relative to her talent. But this is a match she should win, with her defensive abilities and accuracy giving her the tools to outmanoeuvre Pliskova.
Prediction: Vekic in 3

Damian:
It’s a tough call. Both ladies got some practice before the US Open, but mostly on clay. Unlike Pliskova, Vekic played “Cincinnati” too, but lost in the opening round to the eventual champion. On average, Vekic is a much better hard court player though and she should be expected to dial in at some point.
Prediction: Vekic in 3

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Natalia Vikhlyantseva vs Kristin Scott

Tracey:
The 16-year-old Katrina Scott will make her US Open debut against World #131 Natalia Vikhlyantseva. Scott is yet another example of America’s promising young players. Nerves will certainly play a part in Scott’s campaign, and surely the Russian will benefit. While the likelihood of Scott winning is slim, we’ll see quite a bit of this American teen in the coming years.
Prediction: Vikhlyantseva in 2

Jim:
Vikhlyantseva has not played competitively since February, but she has been handed a relatively kind first-round draw at the US Open, where she will start her campaign against the 16-year-old wild card Scott. There might be some rustiness in the Russian’s game for the teenager to take advantage, but this looks likely to be too great of a challenge too soon for Scott.
Prediction: Vikhlyantseva in 3

Damian:
The 16-year-old American is a bit of an enigma. She had decent success on the junior tour, topping off at a career-high ranking of no.38. Vikhlyantseva hasn’t played since March but she’s generally solid enough to avoid a weird loss here.
Prediction: Vikhlyantseva in 2

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Christina McHale vs Sorana Cirstea

Tracey:
The head to head favors McHale. However, their last match was played on the hard courts in 2017, with Cirstea taking the win. Neither McHale or Cirstea are in tip top form but McHale is showing much more promise. Her aggressive baseline game and big serve should see her through a tough bout.
Prediction: McHale in 2

Jim:
McHale may have ended up rather running out of steam at the Western & Southern Open, losing 3-6 0-6 to Ons Jabeur in the third round, but that should not detract from what a great week it was for the American. She will surely be full of confidence as a result and should be relatively comfortable up against the struggling Cirstea.
Prediction: McHale in 2

Damian:
McHale had a fantastic week at the Western & Southern Open, coming through the qualifying and reaching the third round. Her opponent was once regarded as one of the best future prospects but she is definitely not on the right path to fulfilling the expectations. Cirstea rarely plays her best these days and it looks like McHale caught some great through playing the exhibition tour.
Prediction: McHale in 3

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Victoria Azarenka vs Barbara Haas

Tracey:
The Victoria Azarenka who reached World #1 and claimed multiple Major titles is back. The Belorussian blew through the opposition at “Cincinnati” to lift her first trophy since 2016 – her first trophy as a mother. The aggressive, line painting style which led Azarenka to tennis’ upper echelons was on full display last week. At the US Open, we’ll see the confident, champion version of Azarenka continue. Expect a deep run.
Prediction: Azarenka in 2

Jim:
Azarenka looks to have used the break in the season to good effect. After losing in the first round in Lexington, she put together a memorable run in Cincinnati and will surely head into the US Open full of confidence. And whilst the title will surely be beyond the two-time finalist, she should have too much for world #139 Haas.
Prediction: Azarenka in 2

Damian:
Two weeks ago, I’d probably think about Azarenka losing a set here. But after her title run at the Western & Southern Open, everything has changed. The level of play the Belarusian showed there was perhaps her best since giving birth in 2016 and if she can keep it up, there’s no way she struggles here.
Prediction: Azarenka in 2

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