I am really enjoying Tokyo so far and the wall-to-wall coverage on TennisTV has been great. I have one more day of holiday so it’s a bonus to have been able to watch a little bit more tennis than usual. The first four second round matches will take place on Wednesday. If you need a good laugh, then you have to watch the video below. Note that Barbora Zahlavova Strycova lost her first round match to Elina Svitolina…
1. Belinda Bencic v Lucie Safarova (WTA Tokyo, R2)
In the first round of the 2014 Toray Pan Pacific Open, Belinda Bencic delivered an awesome performance to defeat Svetlana Kuznetsova, 6-3 6-0. There was one particular rally in the second set where Bencic was dominating her more experienced opponent, before taking the pace off and creating a delightfully angled crosscourt winner. It was one of those points where you think… she’s got it. Kuznetsova didn’t play a great match and her serve was very erratic in the second set. However, in this case I think this result was more about Belinda rather than Svetlana. Bencic will play Lucie Safarova in the second round.
I’m hanging my head in shame because I went against Lucie in the first round! After losing the first set of her match with Madison Keys, Safarova came through in three sets to win, 6-7(4) 6-4 6-2 in two hours and 19 minutes. Again, I sound like a broken record but Lucie has come so far in 2014. This was another very solid victory for Lucie, who is currently at number 15 in the rankings. Safarova and Bencic will meet for the first time on Wednesday and I believe this will be a good match. After watching Bencic’s confident and assured display on Monday, I think she is going to be very tough to beat in this form…
Prediction: Bencic d. Safarova in 2 tight sets
WTA Tokyo 2nd Round Predictions:
Dominika Cibulkova d. Coco Vandeweghe in 3 sets
Angelique Kerber d. Elina Svitolina in 2 sets (1 tight, 1 easy)