WTA Wimbledon Day 4, 2nd Round Preview: Riske v Giorgi, Ivanovic v Zheng and more

Victoria Azarenka was the highest seeded casualty on Wednesday as she was knocked out of the tournament by Bojana Jovanovski, 6-3 3-6 7-5.  It was a fantastic match featuring plenty of brutal rallies.  There wasn’t much variety, but the hitting was so good from both players.  Azarenka hit 19 more winners than Jovanovski, but the Serb was incredibly gutsy, saving a string of break points at 5-5 in the decider.  Like her match with Giorgi in Eastbourne, Vika played well, but finished the match with some loose errors.  I feel like Jovanovski has played some good matches against the best players on the tour, but has always come up short.  This was a fabulous win for her.

Who will win Wimbledon poll: After over 150 votes, Serena Williams came out on top with 24% of your votes followed by Simona Halep (16%) and Maria Sharapova (15%).  Ana Ivanovic and Sabine Lisicki were next on the list of most fancied to win this fortnight.

1. Alison Riske v Camila Giorgi


The only seed to fall in the first quarter on Tuesday was Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.  It was a tremendously gutsy display from Alison Riske , who came from a set down to knock out Pavlyuchenkova, 4-6 7-5 6-1.  The American was second best early on as Pavlyuchenkova dominated on serve.  On most occasions, this would have been a straight sets win for Pav.  Riske though, dug in deep at the beginning of the second set to hold some tight service games and then took advantage when the Pavs serve went walkabouts.  Pavlyuchenkova reduced the deficit from 5-2 to 5-5, but Riske evenutally sealed the set on her fifth set point.  In the decider, Riske ran away with it as Pavlyuchenkova became increasingly frustrated.

Giorgi nearly lost a set to Alexandra Cadantu in her first round match; the Romanian served for the second set, but Giorgi pulled it out in straight sets,  6-1 7-6(5).  I think this will be a fascinating match between Riske and Giorgi, two great competitors, who have had great results on this surface.  Riske reached the third round of Wimbledon last year, meanwhile Giorgi’s first breakthrough on tour came at Wimby in 2012 when she reached the fourth round.  Giorgi has the more explosive power of the two, but Riske has the better focus and intensity.  Personally, I’d love to see Riske prevail.  Giorgi though, would be my tip in a tight three setter.

Prediction: Giorgi d. Riske in 3 sets

2. Ana Ivanovic v Zheng Jie


Many tennis fans (including me) having been licking their lips at the prospect of a third round match between Ana Ivanovic and Sabine Lisicki.  Before that becomes reality, Ivanovic faces a tricky second round match against the underrated, Zheng Jie.  Ivanovic defeated Francesca Schiavone, 7-6(6) 6-4 in a really fun match on No.1 court.  Schiavone had the ascendancy in the first set tiebreak, but Ivanovic, with all the epic fistpumps you could imagine,  produced some solid grass court tennis to edge out the first set and then ride home on one break of serve in the second set.  Zheng reached the final of s’Hertogenbosch last week and carried that form into her first round match at Wimbledon where she comfortably saw off Annika Beck, 6-1 6-3.

The pair are tied at 2-2 in the H2H and it was Zheng who won the most noteworthy of those encounters at Wimbledon in 2008.  Ivanovic was coming into the tournament as the French Open champion, but was comfortably defeated by Zheng on her way to the semi-finals.  Zheng is a tremendous threat on this surface as the low bounce on the grass enhances her super flat groundstrokes.  Ivanovic has been troubled by Zheng in the past and will need to play much better than she did against Schiavone to book her spot in the third round.

Prediction: Ivanovic d. Zheng in 3 sets

3. Klara Koukalova v Madison Keys


I was really excited for Taylor Townsend‘s chances in this year’s Wimbledon draw.  Of course, I completely overlooked Klara Zakopalova, who put in a classy display to win 7-5 6-2.  Townsend showed glimpses of her potential on this surface, but ultimately never looked comfortable.  She hadn’t played any matches on the grass before Wimbledon and made too many unforced errors… I remain very excited about her potential though.  Zakopalova gets another American in the second round in Madison Keys.  The Eastbourne champion started her Wimby tournament with a first ever win over Monica Puig in an excellent 6-3 6-3 victory.  Koukalova was impressive on Tuesday and has posted some solid results on the grass this year; Keys though had a significant breakthrough at Eastbourne and will have a huge wave of confidence building behind her.  As Jankovic has departed this section, this could be Keys’s for the taking.

Prediction: Keys d. Koukalova in 2 tight sets

4. Belinda Bencic v Victoria Duval


The next generation of WTA stars have really started to make their presence felt on the tour.  In this second round match between 17-year-old, Belinda Bencic and 18-year-old, Victoria Duval, we get to see a glimpse of the next next generation.  Bencic is having a stunning year, the pinnacle being a run to the semi-finals at Charleston.  It is her mentality that has impressed so much and she has made the jump from juniors look effortless. Duval hasn’t made as many ventures onto the WTA tour, but has had the bigger win of the pair, knocking out Sam Stosur at last year’s US Open.  The pair played a qualifying match in Acapulco earlier this year, which Duval won in a third set tiebreak.

Duval came through qualifying and knocked out a seed in Sorana Cirstea in a three set first round match.  It wasn’t a major surprise since Cirstea had skipped all the grass warm up events with a worrying shoulder injury.  Bencic also had a solid win, coming from a set down to beat Magdalena Rybarikova, who remains winless at Wimbledon.  Ben Rothenberg had tweeted after qualifying that Duval was concerned about a back injury.  Duval came through  dominantly in the third set today, but I have a feeling that Bencic has the edge in this match.

Prediction: Bencic d. Duval in 2 tight sets

5. Angelique Kerber v Heather Watson

The one shining ray of light for the Brits (asides from the glowing beacon that is Andy Murray) was a fantastic performance by Heather Watson to secure her place in the second round of Wimbledon.  Watson beat Ajla Tomljanovic, 6-3 6-2.  Hev now gets a seed in Angelique Kerber.  The Eastbourne finalist defeated Urszula Radwanska, condemning the Pole to her fifth loss in her last six matches.  This is a tough match-up for Heather, but you know that she will give it her absolute best.  Kerber’s consistency should win through…

Prediction: Kerber d. Watson in 2 sets (1 tight, 1 easy)

WTA Wimbledon 2nd Round Predictions

Serena Williams d. Chanelle Scheepers in 2 sets

Alize Cornet d. Petra Cetkovska in 3 sets

Andrea Petkovic d. Irina-Camelia Begu in 2 tight sets

Eugenie Bouchard d. Silvia Soler-Espinosa in 2 sets

Kirsten Flipkens d. Lourdes Dominguez Lino in 2 sets

Maria Sharapova d. Timea Bacsinszky in 2 sets

Simona Halep d. Lesia Tsurenko in 2 sets

Donna Vekic d. Vera Zvonareva in 3 sets

Carla Suarez Navarro d. Zarina Diyas in 2 tight sets

Sabine Lisicki d. Karolina Pliskova in 2 sets (1 tight, 1 easy)

Yaroslava Shvedova d. Kaia Kanepi in 3 sets

I’d love to hear some of your predictions and any of mine which you disagree with 😉

One thought on “WTA Wimbledon Day 4, 2nd Round Preview: Riske v Giorgi, Ivanovic v Zheng and more

  1. Olá, i would like know as you prepare your picks? You’ll the matches ?
    Sorry my english, i’m brazilian.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.