WTA Stuttgart, 1st Round Previews: Strycova v Muguruza, Radwanska v Errani

1. Barbora Strycova v Garbine Muguruza (Stuttgart, R1)

Garbine MuguruzaThere are many first round matches of note in this year’s Stuttgart draw, but the one that really stood out for me features Barbora Strycova and Garbine Muguruza.  This will be the first time the pair have played each other and their games couldn’t be further apart.  Muguruza and Strycova (I still keep writing Zahlavova) have had similar trajectories this year with decent starts to the year but minor letdowns during March.  Strycova went 10-4 through her first four tournaments, compiling together her best ever start to a WTA season with semi-final appearances in Auckland and Antwerp; however, since the latter she has gone 2-4.  Strycova failed to win even a set through Indian Wells and Miami.

Equally, Muguruza started the season with impressive results; she reached the fourth round of the Australian Open and earnt back-to-back-to-back wins over Jelena Jankovic, Agnieszka Radwanska and Carla Suarez Navarro en route to the semi-finals in Dubai.  Muguruza won a match at both Indian Wells and Miami, but did not proceed past the third round at either tournament.  Her loss to Sara Errani in Miami was a little surprising as she had beaten the Italian earlier in the year in Sydney, 6-0 7-5.

This is the first time that both players have gained direct entry into the main draw of Stuttgart by virtue of their improved rankings.  Muguruza is due a big result and perhaps it could be this week… or perhaps not!  For all of Strycova’s flair, I think this surface should suit Muguruza… therefore i’m going for the Spaniard to prevail.

Prediction: Muguruza d. Strycova in 2 sets (1 tight, 1 easy)

2. Agnieszka Radwanska v Sara Errani (Stuttgart, R1)

Agnieszka RadwanskaIn a tenth career match-up but a first since 2013, Agnieszka Radwanska and Sara Errani will play in the first round of Stuttgart.  Both players went 1-1 in Fed Cup singles action this weekend.  Radwanska’s miserable year was further compounded by a 6-1 6-1 loss to Timea Bacsinszky.   The result wasn’t particularly surprising, but I don’t think anyone could have guessed that scoreline.  Errani beat Lauren Davis on Saturday and was well on the way to beating Serena Williams… !!!!!!! Serena fought back from a set and a break down to win 4-6 7-6(3) 6-3.  The world number one hit ten times as many winners as Errani throughout the entire match.  It would have been pretty staggering to see Sara win, but a part of me was rooting for it to happen as I do love an underdog.

Radwanska’s year has been rough so far but all her losses have been to top 50 players.  The only one that really warranted a raised eyebrow was against Heather Watson in Indian Wells.  It seems she is stuck in a funk right now in whether to make changes to her game.  Tennis Translations posted a fascinating interview with Radwanska’s coach, Tomasz Wiktorowski, which you can read HERE.  Errani’s had a respectable year but faces a similar problem to Radwanska in that she all too often gets blown aside against a player going for their shots and finding the court.  I still expect Errani to do well on the clay although Stuttgart doesn’t suit her game particularly because it is so quick and favours the server.  I’m a little unsure of this match… Errani would be the favourite based on recent form, but my brain is telling me Radwanska will get her act together in this match-up.

Prediction: Radwanska d. Errani in 3 sets

And I haven’t had time to write a preview for Ivanovic v Garcia, but i’m intrigued to see the general consensus so here’s a poll…

Photos in this post by Jimmie48 Tennis Photography

8 thoughts on “WTA Stuttgart, 1st Round Previews: Strycova v Muguruza, Radwanska v Errani

  1. I’m going Muguruza, Errani and Ivanovic.
    I think Garcia is going to be feeling a tad shaken by a string of losses (she was so close to toppling Safarova) and Radwanska isn’t playing like a top ten player, something Errani does when she’s on clay.


  2. Radwanska is not looking relaxed in her shot making recently, she is looking very uncomfortable in most of her matches (even the matches that she won she looked uncomfortable). I want her to take this one but I am not really sure if she will.


  3. Jeez. No clue of form, surface form and confidence. Another prediction gone horribly wrong with Errani pwning Aga. How many of them will you get wrong?


    • Your comment is totally unwarrented……..how good you at predictions and previews i would like to see…show some respect towards the guy who is putting all these lovely reviews and a nice platform for discussion….no body has invited you here to ding your ***


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