The WTA Tour has turned to the clay courts of Charleston, South Carolina, for the Credit One Charleston Open. This 500-level event includes a 56-woman draw featuring some of the world’s best players. On Day 3, No. 1 seed Jessica Pegula will take on 24-year-old Anna Blinkova. We at LWOT have the preview and prediction for that match as well as all other happenings around the courts of Charleston. But who will advance?
WTA Charleston Day 3 Predictions
Ekaterina Alexandrova vs Yulia Putintseva
Head-to-Head: first meeting
No. 7 seed Ekaterina Alexandrova gets her 2023 Charleston campaign underway against Yulia Putintseva. Despite being born two months apart, this will be the first meeting between the two. Despite Alexandrova being the higher-ranked player, Putintseva is more comfortable on the clay. She took down former world No. 3 Elina Svitolina in Round 1 and should be fresh for this event after going 0-2 in the Sunshine Double. Alexandrova has the skills to morph into a solid clay-court player, but I favor Putintseva’s ability to limit her unforced error count in this match.
Prediction: Putintseva in 3
Shelby Rogers vs Caty McNally
Head-to-Head: Rogers 1-0 McNally
Americans Shelby Rogers and Caty McNally will battle in Round 2 of the Charleston Open. Rogers won their only previous meeting 6-0 6-1 at this event in 2021. Although McNally has massively improved as a singles player since that encounter, I do not think she has what it takes to take down Rogers on the clay. The veteran has always played well in Charleston.
Prediction: Rogers in 2
Bernarda Pera vs Cristina Busca
Head-to-Head: Pera 1-0 Busca
28-year-old Bernarda Pera achieved a career-high ranking of world No. 37 last month and is looking to continue her climb up the world rankings. The lefty has proven to be an excellent clay-court player over her career and will love the Charleston conditions. She takes on Cristina Busca in Round 2. Busca is also a strong clay court player, but most of her damage has been done on the ITF level. Pera should control this match and use the home crowd in her favor.
Prediction: Pera in 2
Linda Fruhvirtova vs Caroline Dolehide
Head-to-Head: first meeting
17-year-old Linda Fruhvirtova has put the WTA Tour on notice over the last eight months and should only continue to see her ranking rise. The Czech native will take on American Caroline Dolehide in Charleston. Dolehide was a wildcard entry into this event but proved the tournament directors right with a Round 1 win over Sabine Lisicki. However, I believe her run ends her as Fruhvirtova has all the makings of a player who can dominate on the clay.
Predictions: Fruhvirtova in 3
Paula Badosa vs Leylah Fernandez
Head-to-Head: Badosa 2-0 Fernandez
No. 12 seed Paula Badosa and Leylah Fernandez will open Day 3 on Stadium Court. Badosa holds the 2-0 head-to-head advantage over Fernandez; both wins coming in straight sets. The 25-year-old Spaniard is starting to slip in the rankings and should be motivated to have a solid clay-court season. Fernandez has also shown a propensity to the clay, but in the end, I trust Badosa to problem-solve and make a deep run in Charleston.
Prediction: Badosa in 3
Main Photo Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports