The Italian Open in Rome is underway with some of the WTA tour’s best set to take the court here on Day 2. Jelena Ostapenko and Elena Rybakina will look to regain some form ahead of Roland Garros, but all eyes will be on a top-30 matchup between Sorana Cirstea and Madrid Champion Ons Jabeur.
WTA Rome Day 2 Predictions
Lauren Davis vs Jelena Ostapenko
Head-to-Head: Ostapenko leads 2-1
Lauren Davis made her way through qualifying and will now face the somewhat out-of-form Jelena Ostapenko. The Latvian had at one point won nine straight matches this season, but has since dropped four in a row. All four losses were close battles, but that is something to monitor for the current World #13. Lauren Davis is not a strong clay court player and I would be hard-pressed to see her find a way to defeat Jelena Ostapenko on this surface. I do think she may make it interesting as Ostapenko tries to regain her early season form.
Prediction: Ostapenko in 3
Elena Rybakina vs Elina Avanesyan
Head-to-Head: First meeting
A Round 1 Next-Gen battle is in the cards as 22-year-old Elena Rybakina takes on 19-year-old Elina Avanesyan. This will be the first meeting between the two. Rybakina currently ranks 15th in the Singles Race but has made just two quarterfinals this season. She has been consistent in the first few rounds of tournaments but has struggled against the best in the sport. I do like her to roll here over Elina Avanesyan, who has just two main draw, Tour-level wins this season.
Prediction: Rybakina in 2
Sara Sorribes Tormo vs Nuria Parrizas-Diaz
Head-to-Head: Parrizas-Diaz leads 1-0
Sara Sorribes Tormo is playing some phenomenal tennis of late. She is 7-2 on the clay this season having made a run to the quarterfinals in both Istanbul and Madrid. The Spaniard is having a breakthrough season but will have a Round 1 battle on her hands when she takes on countrywoman Nuria Parrizas-Diaz. Parrizas-Diaz is a Lucky Loser in the draw after losing in Round 2 of qualifying. The veteran made a semifinal early this season in Monterrey where she did defeat Sorribes Tormo along the way but has struggled on the clay this season. I favor the younger and more in-form Spaniard in this one.
Prediction: Sorribes Tormo in 3
Sorana Cirstea vs Ons Jabeur
Head-to-Head: Cirstea leads 2-0
Ons Jabeur is playing some of the best tennis on the WTA Tour. Coming off of a title in Madrid last week, Jabeur holds a 12-2 record on the clay this season. Veteran Sorana Cirstea is playing some of the best tennis of her career this season as she currently holds a ranking of World #26. She made a run to the Istanbul semifinals in late April and is looking to carry that momentum to Rome. On paper, this has the makings of one of the best Round 1 matches in the field. The major question is how fatigued will Ons Jabeur be after her title run in Madrid? She felt well enough to play here in Rome, so I have to believe she will continue her winning ways.
Prediction: Jabeur in 3
Main Photo from Getty.