Daria Kasatkina, the Clever Russian Counterpuncher

Each Monday, LWOT will profile a champion from one of the previous week’s tournaments. This week’s profile is of St Petersburg champion, Daria Kasatkina.

Daria Kasatkina is a clever Russian tennis player who has been ranked as high as #10 in the world. She has made the quarterfinals of both the French Open and Wimbledon, and the fourth round of the US Open. Kasatkina has so far won three WTA singles titles in her career. However, injuries and patchy form have contributed to her drop in the rankings.

Daria Kasatkina Career Profile

Background

Daria Kasatkina was born in Tolyatti, Samara Oblast which is 1000 kilometers southeast of Moscow. She was born on the 7th of May in 1997. Elite sport runs through her veins, as both her parents have competed nationally in their respective sports, her mother in athletics and her father in ice hockey.

Style of game

Daria Kasatkina is a baseliner in the mold of players like Daniil Medvedev and Andy Murray, who like to change the ball’s pace and trajectory  to disrupt their opponent’s rhythm. She has had success on all surfaces, winning Charleston on clay, the Kremlin Cup on hard court, and made the quarterfinals of Wimbledon on grass. Kasatkina, while having excellent offensive options, is also a tremendous defensive player. But sometimes, she gets caught being too tentative and relies on her defense too heavily. But at her best, Kasatkina is a player with tremendous potential, with career wins over Angelique Kerber and Caroline Wozniacki, among others.

Coach

Carlos Martinez is Daria Kasatkina’s coach. Martinez has previously coached Russian great Svetlana Kuznetsova.

Form so far in 2021

So far in 2021, Daria Kasatkina has shown glimpses of her best tennis. After losing a close match to Aryna Sabalenka at the Australian Open, she won the Phillip Island Trophy in Melbourne. Just yesterday, won a hardcourt event in St Petersburg, defeating fellow Russian Margarita Gasparyan in the final.

Outlook for 2021

Kasatkina’s form in 2021 indicates that she is playing at a higher level than her current ranking of #61 suggests. Her best chance to win a Major is at the French Open, where the slower surface allows her to use her heavy topspin forehand to create unpredictable angles. Given her potential and previous results, expect Kasatkina to climb back into the Top 30 in the first half of the year, and top 15 by the end of the year. She has too many weapons in her arsenal to be ranked outside the Top 30. We at LWOT look forward to seeing how Kasatkina progresses throughout the year.

Main Photo from Getty.


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