WTA Italian Open Day 1 Predictions Including Alison Riske vs Aliona Bolsova

Alison Riske in action ahead of the WTA Italian Open

Day one at the WTA Italian Open should see plenty of entertaining tennis, with a number of star names in action in Rome. As ever, we here at LWOT will be offering our predictions for every match on the slate, including Camila Giorgi vs Dayana Yastremska and Hsieh Su-wei vs Elise Mertens. But who will come out on top on day one in Rome?

WTA Italian Open Day One Predictions

Barbora Strycova vs Veronika Kudermetova

Head-to-head: first meeting

Barbora Strycova has established herself as one of the leading doubles players on the WTA Tour over the last decade and the skills she has sharpened in that format have also brought her success in singles. That is chiefly because of her deft touch at the net, which makes her a difficult opponent for those more accustomed to baseline duels. But will her ability in the forecourt be enough to take her past Veronika Kudermetova and into the second round at the WTA Italian Open?

Quite possibly not. Kudermetova enjoyed an excellent run at the US Open in the doubles, reaching the semifinals with Anna Blinkova, where they lost narrowly to the eventual champions Laura Siegemund and Vera Zvonareva. She also has more matches under her belt than Strycova since the season resumed, which should stand her in good stead heading into this match. Kudermetova can be inconsistent, but expect her to have enough here.

Prediction: Kudermetova in 2

Julia Goerges vs Danka Kovinic

Head-to-head: Goerges 1-1 Kovinic

Danka Kovinic has enjoyed a superb 2020 so far, having gone 15-6. And she should be well-accustomed to playing on the clay after reaching the quarterfinals at the Istanbul Cup before successfully negotiating the qualifying in Rome, with wins over Ulrikke Eikeri and Katarzyna Kawa, who she edged out after three hard-fought sets. But although Kovinic is a solid clay-courter, she will face a stern test up against the veteran Julia Goerges. The German has not had her best season and can be hit-or-miss, but she should have the weaponry to overpower the Montenegrin.

Prediction: Goerges in 3
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Anna Blinkova vs Jil Teichmann

Head-to-head: first meeting

Blinkova claimed a solid 7-5 6-3 win over the struggling Stefanie Vogele to reach the main draw. The Russian struggled in the US, falling to first-round exits in Lexington and the Western and Southern Open and the US Open, although she did reach the last four at the US Open in the doubles alongside Kudermetova. Nonetheless, she will be concerned that she has not won a main draw match since the Australian Open in January.

Jil Teichmann, meanwhile, did not fare well at the Western and Southern Open or the US Open, which was surely a major disappointment after her run to the final in Lexington. But, back on her favoured clay, Teichmann will be hoping to put that frustration behind her. The Swiss, who won two titles on the clay last season in Prague and Palermo, where she beat Kiki Bertens, has a much higher ceiling than Blinkova and should prove too strong here.

Prediction: Teichmann in 2
Embed from Getty Images

Alison Riske vs Aliona Bolsova

Head-to-head: first meeting

Alison Riske appears to struggle against her compatriots, with the 30-year-old having found herself on the receiving end of some surprising losses at the hands of fellow Americans recently. That includes defeats to Jennifer Brady at the Qatar Open in February, although that defeat is perhaps more understandable in the wake of Brady’s recent accomplishments, and back-to-back losses to Amanda Anisimova and Ann Li in New York.

As a result, Riske may well be relieved to see Spain’s Aliona Bolsova on the other side of the net in Rome. But Bolsova should not be underestimated, particularly after coming through the qualifying, dropping just six games in the process. That said, the Spaniard has struggled lately, losing in the second round of qualifying Palermo and the first round in Prague. Expect Riske, despite having not quite convinced lately, to add to her struggles.

Prediction: Riske in 2

Main photo:
Embed from Getty Images


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