French Open Day 5 Women’s Predictions Including Sofia Kenin vs Hailey Baptiste

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The French Open wraps up its second round on Day 5. Thursday will see the last 16 Round 2 matches, and we’re here to predict all of them for you. The 16 matches are split between four articles. We predict four matches each article. In addition to this article, the others feature Coco Gauff vs Qiang Wang, Karolina Pliskova vs Sloane Stephens, and Ashleigh Barty vs Magda Linette. Predicting this set of matches are Jim Smith, Damian Kust, and Nurein Ahmed.

French Open Day 5 Predictions

Ann Li vs Elina Svitolina

Jim:
Ann Li’s fine run of form at the Majors continued with the American picking up a commanding win over Margarita Gasparyan, who won just one game. But one suspects that she will face rather sterner resistance up against Elina Svitolina. The Ukrainian has perhaps underperformed at Roland Garros over the course of her career, particularly in recent years, but she made a good start to her campaign this year and her solid baseline play should give her the edge here.
Prediction: Svitolina in 2

Damian:
Li lost just one game against Gasparyan but the competition will be so much tougher here. Her form is still a bit of a question mark after not playing since March, and Svitolina has been really consistent at the French historically.
Prediction: Svitolina in 2

Nurein:
Li has been rising rapidly through the ranks and is 10-2 for the season. By her own lofty standards, it has not been spectacular season for Elina Svitloina, and she will certainly need to bring her A-game. This is not a cushy second-round match by any means. Li is very much capable of hitting through the Ukrainian, and I would not be entirely surprised if she succeeds in doing so.
Prediction: Li in 3

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Zarina Diyas vs Elise Mertens

Jim:
Elise Mertens will surely be targeting a deep run in Paris now that her section of the draw has begun to open up. She certainly looked sharp enough in her opener against Storm Sanders, which she won 6-4 6-1, to suggest that it is a reasonable ambition for the Belgian. She should certainly have enough to account for Zarina Diyas.
Prediction: Mertens in 2

Damian:
Mertens has made at least the third round in her last 12 Grand Slams, and the streak is likely to continue. Diyas has never played her best tennis on clay and she shouldn’t experience much trouble here.
Prediction: Mertens in 2

Nurein:
Clay is hardly Zarina Diyas’ strong point. And Mertens flourishes on this surface. There is just one possible outcome here.
Prediction: Mertens in 2

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Anett Kontaveit vs Kristina Mladenovic

Jim:
This should be an entertaining contest. Anett Kontaveit had to work hard for her first-round win over Viktorija Golubic, but finished strongly to beat the Swiss 6-7 7-6 6-0. She will likely be tested again by Kristina Mladenovic, but although the Frenchwoman is a force to be reckoned with when she is on song, Kontaveit’s power should give the Estonian a decisive advantage, just about.
Prediction: Kontaveit in 3

Damian:
Kontaveit saved a match point in the opening round, staying aggressive even with her back against the wall. Maybe this will help her find her groove, along with a not-so-scary matchup where she leads the head-to-head 4-0.
Prediction: Kontaveit in 3

Nurein:
commanding head-to-head record (4-0), but their matches have been closely contested. There has been at least one tiebreak in each of those four meetings. I think this could be Mladenovic’s time to turn the tables. The Frenchwoman was almost unplayable in her 6-4 6-0 rout of Slovakian qualifier Anna Schmiedlova. It is tough to call but I am giving Mladenovic that tiny bit of edge.
Prediction: Mladenovic in 3

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Sofia Kenin vs Hailey Baptiste

Jim:
Sofia Kenin was not at her best (when has she been this season?) but she hung tough to come through a testing opener against Jelena Ostapenko. She now faces another potentially stern test up against Hailey Baptiste, who has found a rich vein of form at this year’s French Open. Still, Kenin’s greatest strength lies in her ability to dig wins out in difficult conditions. That may just come to her aid again.
Prediction: Kenin in 3

Damian:
Last year’s runner-up had a terrible season before coming here, but rose up to the challenge to beat 2017 champion Ostapenko. Baptiste has been playing great since the qualies but if the more accomplished American keeps it up, she should prevail.
Prediction: Kenin in 3

Nurein:
Hailey Baptiste is making waves at this tournament. And unlike many of her peers in the U.S., she actually loves playing on clay. It will be hard to ignore the gulf in rankings and quality between her and Kenin. Granted the fourth seed has been a sorry mess both emotionally and mentally in recent months, she is still a premier performer on the big stage.
Prediction: Kenin in 2

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