The WTA clay court season is in full swing as we enter the second week at the Mutua Madrid Open. This 1000-level event started with a 96-woman draw that has dwindled to 16. Monday in Madrid will feature all eight Round of 16 matches, including Paula Badosa vs Maria Sakkari. We at LWOT have the preview and prediction for that match and all other happenings around the grounds of Madrid. But who will advance?
WTA Madrid Day 7 Predictions
Iga Swiatek vs Ekaterina Alexandrova
Iga Swiatek continues to be the most dominant player on the WTA Tour. She holds a 22-4 record this season and a 6-0 mark on the clay. The 21-year-old Pole has dropped just one set on the clay this season and holds a ridiculous 34-2 clay-court record in her last 36 matches on the surface. Ekaterina Alexandrova has had an up-and-down season and does not possess the consistency to hang with the top player in the world on this surface.
Prediction: Swiatek in 2
Jessica Pegula vs Martina Trevisan
Head-to-Head: Pegula 1-0 Trevisan
World No. 3 Jessica Pegula has always favored hard courts but is proving to be a formidable out on the dirt this year. Pegula is 7-1 on the clay in 2023 and is looking to reach the Mutua Madrid Open quarterfinals for the second consecutive year. She faces a tough Round of 16 test against world No. 20 Martina Trevisan. The Italian has yet to drop a set this week and has the movement to frustrate Pegula. Ultimately, the American’s ball-striking prowess from the baseline should be too much for Trevisan to handle.
Prediction: Pegula in 2
Liudmila Samsonova vs Irina-Camelia Begu
Head-to-Head: first meeting
Liudmila Samsonova and Irina-Camelia Begu will square off for the first time in the Round of 16 in Madrid. Samsonova has looked terrific in Madrid, dropping just seven games in two matches. The 24-year-old Russian does not have the strongest history on the clay but has become comfortable in the altitude. On the other hand, Begu favors clay as her favorite surface. The 32-year-old has reached the quarterfinals twice in Madrid and has notched some of the biggest wins of her career at this tournament. I expect this to be a very back-and-forth match, but give the slight edge to Samsonova and her serving prowess.
Prediction: Samsonova in 3
Paula Badosa vs Maria Sakkari
Head-to-Head: Badosa 1-1 Sakkari
We are in store for a terrific Round of 16 matchup in Madrid when Paula Badosa and Maria Sakkari take the court. The two have split their previous meetings, though this will be their first matchup on clay. The 25-year-old Spaniard is a terrific clay-court player and pushed her way into the semifinals of this event back in 2021. She is 7-2 on the surface this year, with her lone losses coming against world No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka and world No. 3 Jessica Pegula. Sakkari will not be an easy out and has found previous success in long clay-court battles. That said, I trust Badosa to bring her A-game in front of the home crowd.
Prediction: Badosa in 3
Main Photo Credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports