WTA Toronto Day 1 Predictions Including Storm Sanders vs Leylah Fernandez

Leylah Fernandez in action at the WTA Monterrey Open.
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Day 1 at the WTA National Bank Open in Toronto is already starting strong with several great matches in store. There is a top-30 round one matchup between Beatriz Haddad Maia and Martina Trevisan that should be a thriller. Two Canadians are in action for a local crowd though with very different backgrounds. Katherine Sebov is playing her first WTA Tour-level match of the season, while defending US Open finalist Leylah Fernandez takes the court for the first time in months after a foot injury. American fans who made the trip to Toronto will get to enjoy an all-American contest between Asia Muhammad and Madison Keys. Day 1 is starting strong and setting the tone for what will surely be a great tournament. As always, we predict each match here at Last Word on Tennis.

WTA Toronto Day 1 Predictions

Beatriz Haddad Maia vs Martina Trevisan

Head-to-head: 1-0 Trevisan

Haddad Maia will be looking to ride the momentum from a great grass season where she won consecutive titles. She plays well on all surfaces and will hope to get back on track after a first round loss last week. Trevisan is also having a great year. She made the French Open semifinal and scored her first career title in Rabat. However, both those events were on clay where Trevisan excels with her small size but strong physical game.

Haddad Maia is very different with a big serve and power that allows her to finish points early. While this will be a clash of styles, Haddad Maia will use her size and power to try to prevent Trevisan from getting to her serve. Their only meeting was in 2016 so both players have changed a lot and this one will go a different way. The hard courts will make the difference with Haddad Maia’s game much better fit for the conditions and she will hold serve and take the match.
Prediction: Haddad Maia in 3

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Asia Muhammed vs Madison Keys

Head-to-head: First meeting

Surprisingly, these two veteran Americans are meeting here in Canada for the very first time. However, the main reason for that is the two players have had quite different careers. Muhammed has never cracked the Top 100, while Keys is a Slam finalist who spent time in the Top 10. Muhammed started the year strong on hard courts in Australia, winning three straight ITF titles. She will be glad to be back on hard after a miserable clay and grass season, and looked good in qualifying beating Donna Vekic in the final round to make the main draw.

Keys has struggled with inconsistency but is also best on hard and has an Australian Open semifinal and Indian Wells quarter to her name this year. Keys is a powerful player who will through a lot at Muhammed that she will not have the game to handle. Muhammed will have to force Keys into errors to have a chance, but Keys is strong and powerful and will hit through her all match and win in straight.
Prediction: Keys in 2

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Katherine Sebov vs Yulia Putintseva

Head-to-head: First meeting

Sebov is a local Canadian wild card in the tournament. Though 23, she has almost exclusively played on the ITF Tour. This season she has exclusively played ITF events. Putintseva has had a strong year with a 21-14 record. She is best on clay courts and is making her first tournament back on hard courts. She did take two and a half weeks off to prepare for the change should not struggle too much with the surface transition. Sebov will have to come up with incredible tennis to compete in this match, with just one career win over a player ranked in the top-100. Putintseva is a top-50 player in the world and while she favors clay is still a strong hard court player. Sebov will make it fun for the crowd, but Putintseva is simply the much stronger player and will win easily.
Prediction: Putintseva in 2

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Storm Sanders vs Leylah Fernandez

Head-to-head: First meeting

Sanders is primarily a doubles player who managed to qualify for the main draw in singles, where she faces a tough task against a dangerous Leylah Fernandez who will have the home crowd behind her. Sanders qualified for San Jose last week as well but lost badly to Taylor Townsend in round one. Fernandez has not been her absolute best this year but did take a hard court title in Monterrey. Fernandez had a great French Open where she made the quarterfinal but suffered a foot injury that kept her out until this week. Fernandez’s lefty game and crafty forehand will trouble Sanders all match. The injury concern is significant as she withdrew just last week in Washington. Fernandez will start slow but shake off the rust and use the crowd to will her to victory.
Prediction: Fernandez in 3

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