A new week, a new tournament but the same location. WTA Charleston is back for a sequel, but they seem to have forgotten the marquee names. Regardless, this tournament is highly competitive and whoever comes through to win this week will have to come through a series of close, tough matches.
But who will take one step towards the MUSC Health Women’s Open Trophy (catchy title)? Read our previews to find out. We also predict Monday’s other matches.
WTA Charleston Day 1 Predictions
Nao Hibino vs Misaki Doi
Head-to-head: Hibino 3-2 Doi
Despite the bank of information in the previous meetings of the Japanese pair none of those matches were played on clay so it is difficult to transcribe that form. Hibino has won the last three vs Doi though so that will help her confidence coming into this match. It is confidence that needs a boost though because she has lost six matches in a row now.
Doi in the meantime did win a round here last week before bumping into the in-form world number one Ashleigh Barty. She also won a round in both Dubai and Doha so clearly has better current form. There is little to choose between the pair’s clay court records over the last two years. I think Doi will just about come out on top in this all Japanese battle because she is generally playing the better tennis of the two right now.
Prediction: Doi in 3
Madison Brengle vs Natalia Vikhlyantseva
Head-to-head: First meeting
Both players come into this with losing records in the last twelve months. In fact, one has to work quite hard to find positive form between the pair. The Russian has a decent clay court record on tour winning 56% of her 15 matches in the last two years. Brengle has won only two in seven in that same period.
The American is going to find it difficult to hold serve here. She has done so on less than half the games she has served on clay in the last two years. Vikhlyantseva will jump all over the delivery of Brengle and make it tough. The American is clearly much more at home on a quicker surface and I doubt we will see here in the next round.
Prediction: Vikhlyantseva in 2
Coco Vandeweghe vs Lauren Davis
Head-to-meeting: Davis 1-0 Vandeweghe
There is very little here to recommend a Coco Vandeweghe victory. The former Grand Slam semifinalist hasn’t played a main draw clay-court match in two years, and even over the course of her career has a 41% win record. She also hasn’t won a match in the main draw of a WTA event since June 2019.
On the contrary, Lauren Davis won a couple of matches here last week before losing a tiebreak set to Coco Gauff. This is levels above what Vandeweghe has managed for a long time. We continue to hope that something will click for the former World #10 but I suspect it won’t be in this match.
Prediction: Davis in 2
Main Photo from Getty.