It’s semifinal day at the WTA Chicago Classic and a couple of blockbuster matchups await. Garbine Muguruza takes on Marketa Vondrousova, whilst Ons Jabeur faces Elena Rybakina. Who will advance to Sunday’s championship match?
WTA Chicago Semifinal Predictions
Garbine Muguruza vs Marketa Vondrousova
Head-to-head: Muguruza 1-0 Vondrousova
Muguruza has barely raised a sweat en route to the semi-finals in Chicago. A first-round bye was followed by a 6-4 6-4 win over Ann Li. Muguruza received another free pass in the third round when Victoria Azarenka withdrew due to injury. The Spaniard secured her spot in the final four with a 6-3 6-2 win over world #200 Mai Hontama 6-3 6-2.
Marketa Vondrousova’s draw has been much tougher, the Czech still managed to cruise through the first three rounds with straight set wins over Ajla Tomljanovic (6-2 6-1), Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (6-3 6-2) and Jil Teichmann (6-4 6-3) before sneaking past Danielle Collins 7-6 0-6 7-6.
Muguruza hammered Vondrousova 6-1 6-0 in their only previous meeting during the Melbourne summer series earlier this year. Expect a very different result on this occasion. Muguruza is yet to be truly tested this week; this could work against her here. Vondrousova is clearly in great form and is battle hardened. Vondrousova has the type of awkward style to frustrate Muguruza, especially if the Czech is at her best, which appears to be the case this week. Expect Vondrousova to have the edge here.
Prediction: Vondrousova in 3
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Elena Rybakina vs Ons Jabeur
Head-to-head: Rybakina 1-1 Jabeur
Ons Jabeur is on a mission in Chicago. Jabeur currently sits in ninth place in the race to the WTA Finals and seems extra determined to get herself into the elite 8 for the first time in her career. Jabeur started the event with a ruthless 6-1 6-0 win over Su-Wei Hsieh before battling from behind to beat Jessica Pegula 1-6 6-2 6-3. Jabeur secured her spot in the semifinals with one of her best wins of the season, a 6-4 6-2 win over the top seeded Elina Svitolina where she saved 11 of 12 break points in a clutch performance.
Elena Rybakina is yet to drop a set this week. Straight set victories over Aliaksandra Sasnovich (6-4 6-4), Veronika Kudermetova (7-6 7-5) and Belinda Bencic (6-4 3-1 RET.) has seen the Kazakh reach just her second semifinal of the season.
It was Jabeur that emerged victorious in their most recent meeting. A 7-6 4-6 6-2 win for Jabeur in Dubai earlier this year. I expect a similar result here. Jabeur is the better player, she has more to her game, and she has looked very strong this week. Both players possess great firepower, Jabeur’s ability to mix up the play gives her a point of difference in this matchup. It should prove decisive.
Prediction: Jabeur in 2
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