It has been an entertaining week of tennis so far at the WTA Berlin Open. Just four women remain in contention for the title in the German capital, with all surely eager to book their place in the final, particularly with Wimbledon looming so large on the horizon. But who will secure a spot in Sunday’s final and who will fall to the disappointment of defeat?
WTA Berlin Open Semifinal Predictions
Alize Cornet vs Belinda Bencic
Head-to-head: Bencic 2-1 Cornet
Belinda Bencic has not performed at the level that she would surely expect of herself so far this season. She has had some good results, reaching the final in Adelaide and the last eight in Madrid, but there have been far too many one-sided defeats. However, she started her week by edging out Jule Niemeier in three sets in her opener, before dismissing Petra Martic 6-3 6-4. The Swiss then reached her second semifinal of the year by winning a third-set tiebreak against Ekaterina Alexandrova.
Alize Cornet had also had a largely disappointing season when she arrived in Berlin, but the Frenchwoman has found some form this week. She opened her campaign with a commanding 6-1 6-3 win over Amanda Anisimova, before beating Bianca Andreescu 7-6 7-5. Cornet then pulled off another upset by rallying past Garbine Muguruza, 4-6 6-3 7-6. And when Cornet gets on a roll, she is typically hard to stop. With Bencic still hardly in sparkling form, Cornet should have just about enough to reach the final.
Prediction: Cornet in 3
Embed from Getty Images
Ludmilla Samsonova vs Victoria Azarenka
Head-to-head: first meeting
There is no doubt who is the favourite coming into this match. Victoria Azarenka has a wealth of experience, which includes back-to-back runs to the semifinals at Wimbledon in 2011 and 2012. In contrast, Ludmilla Samsonova is still taking the first steps in her career and had relatively little grass-court pedigree coming into the WTA Berlin Open. Indeed, she is yet to make her debut in the main draw on the hallowed lawns at the All England Club.
But she has shown that she can play on the grass this week, coming through the qualifying before scoring wins over Marketa Vondrousova, Veronika Kudermetova and Madison Keys. But this looks likely to be where her run ends. Azarenka has looked sharp so far in the German capital and when she is on song there are almost no holes in her game. Her excellent return of serve is also particularly effective on faster surfaces. She should have the edge here.
Prediction: Azarenka in 3
Embed from Getty Images