WTA Rabat Day 1 Predictions Including Mayar Sherif vs Kateryna Baindl

Mayar Sherif ahead of WTA Rabat

With Roland Garros just one week away, we have the final warm-up events taking place for players trying to play themselves into form or maintain their momentum. At WTA Rabat, top seed and defending champion Martina Trevisan begins the daunting task of defending almost 1000 points across the upcoming three weeks, which could see her drop out of the Top 80. As always, we here at LWOT will preview and predict every match. Who do you think will win?

WTA Rabat Day 1 Predictions

Francesca Di Lorenzo vs Tatiana Prozorova

Head-to-head: first meeting

Ohio State alum and 2017 NCAA Women’s Doubles champion Di Lorenzo is looking to qualify for her first WTA main draw of the season. The 25-year-old has not found much success on clay this year, a quarterfinal at ITF Zephyrhills being her best result. Di Lorenzo did look convincing in her first qualifying round here though, allowing Valeria Savinykh just three games. 19-year-old Prozorova has also struggled on clay, not being able to translate her indoor hard form. Di Lorenzo’s experience should make her a favorite here.

Prediction: Di Lorenzo in 3
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Timea Babos vs Naiktha Bains

Head-to-head: Babos 1-0 Bains

Opening the action on centre court will be former No. 25 (and former Doubles No. 1) Timea Babos facing off with Brit Naiktha Bains. Babos has dropped down to the lower ITF levels but has been nearly unstoppable this year, 21-2 in 2023. The Hungarian has been a globetrotter, reaching the final of an ITF 60 in Pretoria, South Africa before winning ITF 25 titles in Jackson, Mississippi, Sharm El-Sheikh in Egypt, and Larnaca in Cyprus. The Hungarian is now on a 16-win streak and considering Bains is not a clay-court player, I expect her to extend it.

Prediction: Babos in 2
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Leolie Jeanjean vs Gabriela Lee

Head-to-head: first meeting

12 months since her breakout third-round run at Roland Garros, where she beat Karolina Pliskova, Jeanjean has not managed to break the Top 100 but has kept herself in the vicinity. After a slower start to clay in 2023, the Frenchwoman made the quarterfinals in Saint-Malo, only losing to Elina Svitolina. Jeanjean could only play one set against Dayana Yastremska in Rome qualifying before having to retire. Lee has struggled mightily this season though, going winless in Australia and playing clay ITFs in the US since. Outside of her semifinal run in Boca Raton, the Romanian is 3-9. If Jeanjean is fit enough to play, she should be winning here.

Prediction: Jeanjean in 2
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Mayar Sherif vs Kateryna Baindl

Head-to-head: Sherif 3-0 Baindl

Third seed Sherif did not show much on hard courts across the first quarter of the year, a quarterfinal run in Monterrey being the highlight. The Egyptian has come alive on clay as usual though, breaking a three-match losing streak with a semifinal run at ITF Oeiras before coming to Madrid. After a first-round retirement from Camila Giorgi, Sherif took out Anhelina Kalinina, Caroline Garcia, and Elise Mertens to reach the quarterfinals. Baindl (neé Kozlova) has played sparingly this year, 3-6 in 2023 with just one clay match. The Ukrainian is playing her first tournament since her first-round loss to Elina Avanesyan in San Luis Potosi at the end of March. Sherif has won all of their previous meetings, with all three played within the last two years, including a hard-fought Colina final. The Egyptian should breeze through.

Prediction: Sherif in 2

Main Photo Credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports