Australian Open Day 4 Women’s Predictions Including Aryna Sabalenka vs Shelby Rogers

Aryna Sabalenka in action at the Australian Open.

There should be plenty of excitement around the grounds at Melbourne Park on day four at the Australian Open with 16 second-round matches on the schedule. As ever, we here at LWOT will be offering our predictions for every match on the schedule, including Leylah Fernandez vs Caroline Garcia, Katie Volynets vs Veronika Kudermetova and Marketa Vondrousova vs Ons Jabeur. But who will reach the last 32?

Australian Open Day 4 Predictions

Kimberly Birrell vs Linda Fruhvirtova

Jim: What an opportunity this is for Linda Fruhvirtova. The Czech is clearly one of the coming powers of the women’s game and she showed why in her 6-0 6-4 destruction of Jaimee Fourlis in the first round. Kimberly Birrell will likely offer more resistance than her compatriot, but this should still be another straight-sets win for the 17-year-old Fruhvirtova.

Prediction: Fruhvirtova in 2

Damian: Birrell is coming off an upset over Kanepi and it’s not going to be easy to repeat that sort of a result. Fruhvirtova is brutally consistent and while she doesn’t offer that much in terms of weaponry, the Australian would need a phenomenal performance to take her out.

Prediction: Fruhvirtova in 2

Yesh: The elder Fruhvirtova sister already took out one Australian at this event. I expect that she’ll make it two for two.

Prediction: Fruhvirtova in 2
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Anett Kontaveit vs Magda Linette

Jim: Anett Kontaveit endured an end to 2022 that was little short of disastrous. Can the Estonian put that right at the Australian Open? Magda Linette will not make it easy for her, but Kontaveit has enough power to hit through the Pole. Provided she can temper it with the required accuracy, expect the 16th seed to book her place in the round of 32.

Prediction: Kontaveit in 2

Damian: Linette struggled for a bit against Sherif, but managed to steady the course. She’ll likely need to be cleaner here, but she’ll also be facing a completely different opponent. Kontaveit isn’t at the top of her game at the moment and remains vulnerable. Linette has pulled off upsets like that at the Slams before.

Prediction: Linette in 3

Yesh: Kontaveit has somewhat struggled recently, certainly far below here 2021-ending form. The potential is still there and she loves this surface, though, so we’ll see what she can bring against a tough hitter.

Prediction: Kontaveit in 3
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Varvara Gracheva vs Lucrezia Stefanini

Jim: There does not seem to be a great deal between this pair. Or there wouldn’t if Varvara Gracheva had not delivered one of the finest performances of her career to date to dismantle (an albeit wayward) Daria Kasatkina in the first round. If she can maintain that level, expect her to have too much for Lucrezia Stefanini.

Prediction: Gracheva in 3

Damian: Stefanini owns two head-to-head wins from clay events a couple of years ago. Gracheva has made a lot more progress since and has been a somewhat regular presence on the main circuit. She will need to watch out for the Italian’s funky technique though (two-handed on both strokes).

Prediction: Gracheva in 2

Yesh: Kasatkina wasn’t herself in the opening match, but Gracheva was brutally efficient in dispatching her. That attitude alone should carry her past Stefanini.

Prediction: Gracheva in 2
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Aryna Sabalenka vs Shelby Rogers

Jim: There should be no shortage of clean winners here. But it is Aryna Sabalenka who has the more consistent and secure game. Which is saying something considering the Belarusian’s struggles, particularly on the biggest stage. But she looked sharp in the first round and more of the same should see her past Shelby Rogers. Should being the operative word.

Prediction: Sabalenka in 2

Damian: Sabalenka looks like a contender to win the event, but Rogers is known for her ability to produce upsets like this. She’s never easy to play against a Grand Slam, although it does seem like the Belarusian should now be at a stage where she pushes through matches like that consistently.

Prediction: Sabalenka in 3

Yesh: Sabalenka showed no nerves or inconsistency in her first match. If she continues doing that, she’ll go very deep here.

Prediction: Sabalenka in 2

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