Australian Open Day 1 Women’s Predictions Including Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova vs Naomi Osaka

Sorana Cirstea in action ahead of the Australian Open

There should be plenty of entertaining action on day one at the Australian Open. As ever, we here at LWOT will be offering our predictions for every match on the slate, including Kirsten Flipkens vs Venus Williams, 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 reach the second round?

Australian Open Day One Predictions

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova vs Naomi Osaka

Jim: This is hardly the easiest first-round draw for Naomi Osaka, who did not look quite at her best at the WTA Gippsland Trophy. But she should enjoy the quick conditions in Melbourne once she gets into her stride and it would be a major surprise if she fell at the first hurdle.

Prediction: Osaka in 2

Yesh: Pavlyuchenkova can be a challenge for almost anyone at any Slam, but Osaka is in imperious form. She hasn’t lost a match while healthy in almost a year. She won’t struggle here.

Prediction: Osaka in 2

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Polona Hercog vs Caroline Garcia

Jim: One can never quite be sure what to expect from Caroline Garcia, but the Frenchwoman is not short of talent and her attacking game looks well-suited on paper to the fast-medium hard courts found at Melbourne Park. If she is at her best, expect her to prove too strong for Polona Hercog.

Prediction: Garcia in 2

Yesh: Garcia has been up-and-down, but her best is definitely better than Hercog. It’s hard to quite know her mental state, but she looked fine last week. That should be enough to get past Hercog.

Prediction: Garcia in 3
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Sara Errani vs Wang Qiang

Jim: Sara Errani is never short of industry and the Italian played well to come through the qualifying. But the usual advantage of match sharpness and familiarity with the conditions has been negated by the transfer of the qualifying to Dubai and, without that advantage, it is hard to see her getting the better of Wang Qiang.

Prediction: Wang in 3

Yesh: Sara Errani was once a top player, but those days are long past her. Wang is solid on this surface and that should be enough unless Errani can find some of her old magic.

Prediction: Wang in 2
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Patricia Maria Tig vs Sorana Cirstea

Jim: Sorana Cirstea’s star has waned in recent times, but the Romanian has been in reasonably good form of late, winning an ITF event in Doha in December and reaching the quarterfinals at the Grampians Trophy, upsetting Belinda Bencic en route. She was then thrashed by Ann Li, but that is still better preparation than Patricia Maria Tig, who lost first round, enjoyed.

Prediction: Cirstea in 3

Yesh: Cirstea had her first “breakout” five years ago, but she hasn’t really reached the top of the game yet. The potential is always there, though, and she definitely has more talent than Tig.

Prediction: Cirstea in 2

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