WTA Istanbul Day 2 Predictions Including Fiona Ferro vs Petra Martic

Fiona Ferro in action ahead of the WTA Istanbul Cup.

With the European clay-court season now well underway, there should be plenty of entertaining tennis on day two at the WTA Istanbul Cup, with every player in the draw surely determined to find some form ahead of Madrid, Rome and Paris. As always, we here at LWOT will be offering our predictions for every match on the slate, including Elise Mertens vs Lara Arruabarrena. But who will book their place in the second round?

WTA Istanbul Cup Day Two Predictions

Kamila Rakhimova vs Marta Kostyuk

Head-to-head: first meeting

This may be the first meeting between Kamila Rakhimova and Marta Kostyuk in the professional ranks, but it seems a safe bet to assume that it will not be the last. Rakhimova has impressed at times this season, most notably on her last outing at the WTA St Petersburg Ladies Trophy when she came through the qualifying to reach the second round, but she remains relatively inexperienced at this level. The same could be said, albeit to a lesser extent, of Kostyuk.

The Ukrainian has at least established herself in the top 100, but this has been an indifferent season for her so far. She did reach the semifinals at the WTA Abu Dhabi Open, but she has won just two matches since. Still, this is a match that she will surely consider winnable. Kostyuk is that much further along in her development than Rakhimova and has a largely solid record on the clay, even if she is more comfortable on hard courts. Expect that to give her a narrow, but decisive, advantage here.

Prediction: Kostyuk in 3
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Nao Hibino vs Ana Bogdan

Head-to-head: Hibino 1-1 Bogdan

This is another match that looks to have the makings of a close contest. Nao Hibino arrives at the WTA Istanbul Cup having snapped a six-match losing streak by reaching the quarterfinals in Charleston last week, where she notched creditable wins over her compatriot Misaki Doi and the USA’s Francesca Di Lorenzo. That said, her tournament did end in less than ideal fashion as eventual runner-up Jabeur swept her aside for the loss of just one game.

Ana Bogdan, meanwhile, has been out of action since losing a see-sawing match to Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the first round in St Petersburg. But she may well be glad to be back on the clay, with the Romanian having recorded a number of her best results on the terre battue. In a contest between two players relatively short of form and confidence, that greater affinity for clay-court tennis might just give her the edge in Turkey’s second city.

Prediction: Bogdan in 3
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Veronika Kudermetova vs Bernarda Pera

Head-to-head: Kudermetova 2-2 Pera

After starting the season in excellent style by reaching the final in Abu Dhabi, Veronika Kudermetova’s form had tailed off in recent weeks. Until she arrived in Charleston that is. The Russian put together an excellent week in South Carolina to win the title without dropping a set and that will surely have given her real confidence heading into the European clay-court swing. But she may need to be at her best up against Bernarda Pera, with the pair having split their previous four meetings.

However, Pera does not come into the WTA Istanbul Cup in particularly impressive form. The American has lost her last four matches, a run that stretches back to the Australian Open in February. Nor does she boast a very impressive record on the clay at WTA-level, although she has won seven ITF titles on the surface. Still, it is hard to see her getting the better of the in-form Kudermetova. Expect the Russian to advance without encountering too many problems.

Prediction: Kudermetova in 2
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Fiona Ferro vs Petra Martic

Head-to-head: Martic 1-0 Ferro

This is surely the match to watch on day two in Istanbul. Petra Martic may have struggled somewhat over the last 12 months, but the Croatian remains a formidable opponent when she is on song with an excellent clay-court resume, one that includes a run to the quarterfinals at the French Open in 2019. Fiona Ferro, meanwhile, has been plagued by inconsistency and injury since winning her first title on the clay in Palermo last season, but looks to have a bright future nonetheless.

Both women will understandably be desperate to get back to winning ways after crashing out early in Miami, the last outing for both. But Ferro might just be able to carve out an advantage here, despite losing her only previous match against Martic. Her court-coverage has improved in the interim, whilst she is also more comfortable stepping inside the baseline and hitting winners. If she can play on the front foot against Martic and take the initiative away from the Croatian, expect Ferro to secure her place in the round of 16.

Prediction: Ferro in 3

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