Australian Open Day 1 Women’s Predictions Including Kirsten Flipkens vs Venus Williams

Elena Rybakina in action ahead of the Australian Open

On a packed day one at the Australian Open, there looks set to be plenty of thrilling tennis. As ever, we here at LWOT will be offering our predictions for every match on the slate, including Naomi Osaka vs Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, Laura Siegemund vs Serena Williams, Aryna Sabalenka vs Viktoria Kuzmova, Bianca Andreescu vs Mihaela Buzarnescu, Simona Halep vs Lizette Cabrera and Greet Minnen vs Petra Kvitova. But who will book their place in the second round?

Australian Open Day One Predictions

Kirsten Flipkens vs Venus Williams

Jim: Kirsten Flipkens is a wily operator and she may well enjoy the conditions in Melbourne. She certainly looked sharp enough in Abu Dhabi before injury forced her to retire in the second round. But Venus Williams, whilst far from the force she once was, still boasts formidable power. Expect that to be enough to see her into the second round.

Prediction: Williams in 3

Fraser: Williams looked good in the Melbourne warmup matches. She took Kvitova the distance in a close-fought affair in the second round. Flipkens, on the other hand, hasn’t played since Abu Dhabi where she lost to Sofia Kenin in a close second round match. Williams enjoys the conditions in Australia and can keep up with anyone on the tour when she’s on song. Back her to get the job done here.

Prediction: Williams in 2

Yesh: How well Williams does will depend on her mental and physical state. She looked in solid form last week, one much better than Flipkens can keep up with.

Prediction: Williams in 2
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Marketa Vondrousova vs Rebecca Peterson

Jim: It has been a tough 12 months for both Marketa Vondrousova and Rebecca Peterson. The Czech has appeared to struggle with the weight of expectation created by her run to the French Open final in 2019, whilst Peterson looked like she couldn’t buy a win for much of 2020. But Vondrousova has the higher ceiling of the two and played the better tennis at the warm-up events.

Prediction: Vondrousova in 3

Fraser: Vondrousova made the semifinals of her warmup event while Rebecca Peterson fell short in the second round. The Swede is certainly short of confidence after a poor 2020. Vondrousova has shown glimpses of elite potential on the tour. 2021 should be the year she fulfils it if she can stay injury free, starting with a strong showing at the Australian Open.

Prediction: Vondrousova in 2

Yesh: Peterson is a solid and consistent player on her day, but she just doesn’t have the tool set to stick with Vondrousova. As long as the Czech plays well, she’ll win easily.

Prediction: Vondrousova in 2
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Timea Babos vs Ysaline Bonaventure

Jim: Ysaline Bonaventure looked somewhat out of her depth against Danielle Collins at the Yarra Valley Classic, losing 3-6 3-6. Timea Babos may not be quite as dangerous an opponent as the American, but she should still have enough to account for the Belgian.

Prediction: Babos in 3

Fraser: Babos will have her sights set on another Grand Slam win with doubles partner Kristina Mladenovic. However, she should like her chances of moving on here with the power and flatness of her groundstrokes, which should be well-suited to the hard courts in Melbourne.

Prediction: Babos in 3

Yesh: I keep on waiting for Bonaventure to make a run at the top of the game, but it’s not happening yet. Babos seems unable to reach her full potential, but she has loads of talent just beneath the surface.

Prediction: Babos in 3

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Vera Zvonareva vs Elena Rybakina

Jim: One is inclined to expect big things for Elena Rybakina this season, despite her less than impressive play at the warm-up events at Melbourne Park. Vera Zvonareva, meanwhile, has plenty of experience, but will she be able to endure the power that Rybakina can summon? Probably not.

Prediction: Rybakina in 2

Fraser: Rybakina will look to shake off a poor performance in the Grampians Trophy quickly as she holds aspirations of a deep run in this tournament. The young Kazakh takes on a seasoned veteran of the tour in Zvonareva. The Russian has shown moments of quality since returning to the game but hasn’t put together anything consistent. She is outgunned on all fronts by Rybakina here and this should be a straightforward win for the 21-year old star.

Prediction: Rybakina in 2

Yesh: Zvonareva is up and down, but she always has the potential to be a top player. Rybakina, meanwhile, has far more than potential. She is a top player right now. Unless Zvonareva can find her form of a decade ago, this will be one-way traffic.

Prediction: Rybakina in 2

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