I’m still trying to process some of the results from Tuesday… One of Lesia Tsurenko, Jelena Jankovic, Flavia Pennetta and Sabine Lisicki will be in the Indian Wells final on Sunday. It’s a surprising line-up considering Lisicki and Jankovic have endured miserable starts to the year. In fact, the four players in the bottom half all failed to win a WTA main draw match down under. Tsurenko was the only player to actually win a match as she successfully qualified for both Brisbane and Sydney. Previews of the bottom half quarters coming later today but for now, here’s a couple of speedy previews for today’s WTA matches…
1. Simona Halep v Carla Suarez Navarro (IW, QF)
I am a failure of a tennis fan as I was asleep when Simona Halep and Karolina Pliskova took to the court. It was the one match that I really wanted to see and unfortunately, the schedule has not tended to my needs this week! Halep sealed a straight sets win over Pliskova, 6-4 6-4. Halep’s quarter-final opponent will be Carla Suarez Navarro. After going down a break at 3-3 in her fourth round match with Heather Watson, CSN took a MTO for an ankle/foot injury. She got an immense tape job and looked in big trouble early on as she struggled to run without wincing. However she seemed to run off the injury and came through in three sets, 7-6(5) 3-6 6-1 to continue her excellent start to the year. CSN has a 16-6 W-L record in 2015, which has included wins over Petra Kvitova, Ekaterina Makarova, Karolina Pliskova (X2), Camila Giorgi (X2) and Sabine Lisicki. Halep and Suarez Navarro will reignite a competitive rivalry which is currently tied at 4-4. The pair played three times in 2013 with Halep winning their two most recent matches. Carla has had a couple of long matches this week although I have learnt this week (from Bacsinszky!) not to completely write off a player who has played a lot of matches. Still, I think Halep will be too strong for Suarez Navarro…
Prediction: Halep d. Suarez Navarro in 2 sets (1 tight, 1 easy)
2. Serena Williams v Timea Bacsinszky (IW, QF)
I’m running out of superlatives to describe Timea Bacsinszky. Wow is all I can conjure up as Bacsinszky won her 15th consecutive match and once again, came from a set down to prevail. Bacsinszky overcame Elina Svitolina in the fourth round, 4-6 6-1 6-1. The Swiss player, who is knocking on the door of the world’s top 20, is 10-1 in three set matches for 2015 and has come from a set down to win her last four matches on tour. Bacsinszky’s reward is a match-up with the world number one, Serena Williams. She also needed three sets to defeat Sloane Stephens, 6-7(3) 6-2 6-2. In fact, six of the eight last 16 WTA matches went the distance on Tuesday. It was a encouraging performance from Stephens, who quickly went up a double break in the first set. She did well to win the opening set, but Serena still came through playing well below her best. In their only previous match, Serena won in Rome back in 2010, 7-6(2) 6-1. Timea’s had an awesome week and I read she has already pulled out of Miami to rest up. She has absolutely nothing to lose so I hope she has something (i’m not sure how) left in the tank to give Serena a good match.
Prediction: S.Williams d. Bacsinszky in 2 sets