WTA Birmingham Classic Quarterfinal Predictions Including Heather Watson vs Donna Vekic

Heather Watson in action at the WTA Birmingham Classic.
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After an entertaining start to the week at the WTA Birmingham Classic, just eight women remain in contention for the title in England’s second city. With Wimbledon less than two weeks away and 500 valuable ranking points on offer for the winner, all eight will surely be desperate to maintain their challenge. But who will book their place in Saturday’s semifinals?

WTA Birmingham Classic Quarterfinal Predictions

Coco Vandeweghe vs Marie Bouzkova

Head-to-head: Vandeweghe 1-0 Bouzkova

Coco Vandeweghe has been having some week at the WTA Birmingham Classic. The American has been in the tennis wilderness of late, largely due to a succession of injury problems, but her quality should not be overlooked, particularly on the grass. After all, Vandeweghe is a former-Grand Slam semifinalist and has won two grass-court titles, both in Den Bosch. This week, she has looked to be back to something approaching her best.

She came through the qualifying with wins over Gabriela Dabrowski and Kateryna Kozlova, before battling past Kristyna Pliskova and Ajla Tomljanovic to reach the last eight. However, Marie Bouzkova has looked very sharp so far this week, rallying from a set down to beat Hsieh Su-wei in her opener before dismissing Caroline Garcia. With Vandeweghe having already played a lot of tennis this week, expect the fresher Bouzkova to have the edge.

Prediction: Bouzkova in 3
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Daria Kasatkina vs Tereza Martincova

Head-to-head: first meeting

Daria Kasatkina had an indifferent clay-court season, one that was brought to an end in decisive fashion by Sorana Cirstea in the third round at the French Open. But the Russian has bounced back in impressive fashion so far at the WTA Birmingham Classic, picking up solid wins over Polona Hercog, from a set down, and Marta Kostyuk. But she may well need to be at her best up against the qualifier Tereza Martincova.

The Czech has played some fine tennis this week. She negotiated the qualifying without dropping a set (her first opponent Dalila Jakupovic retired after six games) before beating Samantha Stosur comprehensively in the first round. Martincova then edged out Jelena Ostapenko in three sets to reach her second consecutive quarterfinal. But it is hard to see her getting the better of Kasatkina. The Russian’s superior court craft and coverage should give her a decisive advantage.

Prediction: Kasatkina in 3
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Anastasia Potapova vs Ons Jabeur

Head-to-head: first meeting

This looks like the most interesting match of the day. Ons Jabeur has not been at her best this season, but the Tunisian has still picked up some impressive wins and arrived in Birmingham fresh from reaching the fourth round at the French Open. Her campaign in Paris ended in a bitterly disappointing 3-6 1-6 defeat at the hands of Cori Gauff, but that does not appear to have affected her so far at the WTA Birmingham Classic. She opened her week with a 6-4 6-2 win over Catherine McNally before beating Leylah Fernandez 6-4 3-6 7-6.

She may well be tested again up against another young gun in Anastasia Potapova. The Russian’s excellent timing serves her well on a grass court and she has impressed in beating Nina Stojanovic 7-5 6-7 6-4 and Kristina Mladenovic 6-3 6-3. This should be a competitive encounter, with both women able to hit through opponents. But Jabeur has a clear advantage in terms of experience and the Tunisian’s countenance is generally calmer and her strokes more repeatable under pressure.

Prediction: Jabeur in 3
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Heather Watson vs Donna Vekic

Head-to-head: Watson 1-1 Vekic

The last Briton left standing in the draw, Heather Watson, will doubtless have high hopes of replicating Johanna Konta’s acheivement in Nottingham last week. She has impressed so far at the WTA Birmingham Classic, beating the in-form Viktorija Golubic from a set down in her opener, before benefitting from sixth seed Zhang Shuai’s retirement with the Chinese trailing 2-5 in the first set. However, she looks set for a stern test up against Donna Vekic.

The Croatian has perhaps failed to fulfil her potential so far in her career, but time is still on her side. She also has a good record on the grass, having reached three finals on this surface winning one of them, and has looked in good touch so far this week. She opened her campaign with a 6-1 6-3 win over Francesca Jones before edging out former-Wimbledon quarterfinalist Camila Giorgi in the second round. If she can maintain that level, she should have too much for Watson.

Prediction: Vekic in 2

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