It’s Day 3 of 2022 WTA Finals action and we’re back to Group Nancy Richey. The two losers from Monday square off in a battle that could end the campaign of whoever goes down, while the winners will be fighting to get on a very clear path to the semifinal stage. Who do you think will come out on top?
Ons Jabeur vs Jessica Pegula
Head-to-head: Jabeur 3-2
Both players are battling for their lives here as depending on the qualification scenarios the loser will either be eliminated from the tournament, or at best have a slim chance of advancing to the next stage. Ons Jabeur won both their meetings in 2022, which included a demolition in Dubai and a three-set final at the Madrid Open.
Despite sitting at No. 3 in the WTA Race, Jessica Pegula has generally struggled against elite opposition. While her 3-9 record against the top 10 in 2022 is definitely a bit skewed by going up against Iga Swiatek four times, it’s still true that the American often comes up short against the very best. Her game just isn’t explosive enough and someone like Jabeur can dictate against her with ease if she gets into her groove. Pegula’s job will be to try to stop the Tunisian from finding it.
Prediction: Jabeur in 3
Maria Sakkari vs Aryna Sabalenka
Head-to-head: Sabalenka 4-2
Maria Sakkari took their meeting at the WTA Finals last year, but she’s down 2-4 in the head-to-head against Aryna Sabalenka. She’s got two things going for her here. The indoor conditions could help her mitigate some of that raw power of the Belarusian and favor her more dynamic approach to the game.
Sakkari also had her best tournament in months just before this tournament in Guadalajara. These courts don’t really play similarly, but it should fuel her with confidence for her run at the Dickies Arena. In fact, we’ve already seen that as the Greek pulled off a great win over Jessica Pegula. Sabalenka’s defeat of Ons Jabeur was much more of a struggle.
Prediction: Sakkari in 2
Main Photo from Getty.