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WTA Qatar Day 2 Predictions Including Ana Konjuh vs Anett Kontaveit

Anett Kontaveit in action ahead of the WTA Qatar Open.

Expect plenty of entertaining tennis on day two at the WTA Qatar Open with 14 intriguing matches on the schedule and a host of star names set to take to the court. As always, we here at LWOT will be offering our predictions for every match on the schedule, including Simona Halep vs Caroline Garcia, Shelby Rogers vs Coco Gauff and Garbine Muguruza vs Sorana Cirstea. But who will advance?

WTA Qatar Day 2 Predictions

Jelena Ostapenko vs Oceane Dodin

Head-to-head: Dodin 1-0 Ostapenko

After her memorable run to the title in Dubai last week, which saw her beat four Grand Slam champions back-to-back in Sofia Kenin, Iga Swiatek, Petra Kvitova and Simona Halep, before demolishing Veronika Kudermetova 6-0 6-4 in the final, the challenge for Jelena Ostapenko is to maintain that momentum. That has proved to be easier said than done for Ostapenko so far in her career, but she certainly has the requisite talent.

Oceane Dodin should not be underestimated here, however. She looked sharp in coming through the qualifying with straight-sets wins over Harriet Dart and Jaqueline Cristian, and her serve is a weapon to be reckoned with. The problem for the Frenchwoman might be matching Ostapenko off the ground. Ostapenko cannot always control her power, but if she plays nearly as well as she did in Dubai, this should be a relatively comfortable day at the office for the Latvian.

Prediction: Ostapenko in 2
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Elise Mertens vs Jasmine Paolini

Head-to-head: Mertens 2-1 Paolini

Elise Mertens was excellent in the first week at the Australian Open but, and not for the first time in her career, she was unable to kick on thereafter, losing to Danielle Collins in the fourth round. She has been in indifferent form since, reaching the quarterfinals in St Petersburg but crashing out in the first round last time out in Dubai against Jil Teichmann. The Swiss dropped just six games in ending Mertens’ week (in singles at least, she won the doubles title).

To make matters worse for Mertens, Jasmine Paolini proved to be a troublesome opponent when the pair last met, with the Italian rallying from a set down to win in three in the second round in Indian Wells. It is hard to see Paolini replicating that victory, however. She is still finding her feet on the tour away from her preferred clay and, unlike the slow courts in Indian Wells, the conditions at the WTA Qatar Open probably won’t suit her defensive style of play.

Prediction: Mertens in 2
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Arantxa Rus vs Veronika Kudermetova

Head-to-head: Kudermetova 3-0 Rus

Kudermetova’s week at the WTA Dubai Championships ultimately ended in disappointment as she was dismissed by Ostapenko in the final, but it was still ultimately another encouraging showing from the Russian. She will most likely need to develop some bigger weapons if she is to continue her rise up the rankings and establish herself in the top 20, but it is certainly a realistic goal for the Russian. She should also have the beating of Arantxa Rus. The Dutchwoman can be a tenacious opponent, but Kudermetova has her outgunned and has won all three of their previous meetings.

Prediction: Kudermetova in 2
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Ana Konjuh vs Anett Kontaveit

Head-to-head: Kontaveit 1-0 Konjuh

Ana Konjuh delivered another reminder of her quality to edge out the in-form Marta Kostyuk in the first round, but this looks like a tough assignment for the Croatian. Anett Kontaveit started the season in superb form, storming into the semifinals at the WTA Sydney International, and although she fell disappointingly short at Melbourne Park, losing in the second round to Clara Tauson, but she bounced back from that to win the title in St Petersburg.

She also won her only previous match against Konjuh, although it was contested five years ago and on clay. It probably won’t have much bearing on this clash, but of the two, Kontaveit has improved more in the interim, with Konjuh not been helped in that regard  a succession of injuries. Regardless, with the conditions in Qatar generally favouring first-strike tennis, and Kontaveit one of the biggest hitters on the WTA Tour, the Estonian should have enough to reach the third round.

Prediction: Kontaveit in 2

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