WTA Birmingham, 2nd Round Preview: Sabine Lisicki v Belinda Bencic

LisickiAnother reason why I love this time of year is I can bring my happy Sabine pictures out again… yay for the grass. Scanning through the second round matches in Birmingham for Wednesday, the one that JUMPS out at me features Sabine Lisicki and Belinda Bencic. Lisicki is playing her first match on the grass this year, while Bencic is playing her sixth in just over a week. Bencic reached her second WTA final in ‘s-Hertogenbosch with a series of impressive performances. After just one day rest, Bencic turned up in Birmingham and won her first round match against Mirjana Lucic-Baroni, 7-5 6-3.

Bencic was a break down in the first set, but settled after a shaky start and drew on the confidence of her run in Holland to come back. At 5-5, she brought out her crafty (and slightly naughty!) technique of stepping way in on the return and then quickly retreating. It did the job as it brought about the double fault from Lucic-Baroni. Bencic lost her early break in the second set but rebroke straight away at 4-3 and then rolled through the last few games. Lucic-Baroni threw in a shocking final game with two double faults.

Lisicki and Bencic will play each other for the first time on the WTA tour. This promises to be a really intriguing match between two different game styles that are both well suited to the grass. Bencic will no doubt benefit from the matches she has already played on grass. Lisicki though, does have a special affinity with the grass. Lisicki’s results at Birmingham have always been decent and she won the tournament back in 2011 and reached the quarter-finals back in 2013. Originally, I went for Lisicki in my pre-tournament predictions but now i’m not so sure! I’m sticking with Lisicki but hmmm….

Prediction: Lisicki d. Bencic in 3 sets

WTA Birmingham 2nd Round Predictions

Caroline Garcia d. Klara Koukalova in 3 sets

Barbora Strycova d. Lucie Hradecka in 3 sets

Kristina Mladenovic d. Eugenie Bouchard in 3 sets

Carla Suarez Navarro d. Timea Babos in 2 very tight sets

Svetlana Kuznetsova d. Aleksandra Krunic in 3 sets

Victoria Azarenka d. Zarina Diyas in 2 sets

Christina McHale d. Misaki Doi in 3 sets

Jelena Jankovic d. Casey Dellacqua in 2 sets

Magdalena Rybarikova d. Anna Karolina Schmiedlova in 2 sets

Daniela Hantuchova d. Marina Erakovic in 3 tight sets

Ana Ivanovic d. Michelle Larcher de Brito in 2 sets (1 tight, 1 easy)

ATP Queens 2nd Round Predictions

Thanasi Kokkinakis d. Gilles Simon in 3 sets

Stan Wawrinka d. Kevin Anderson in 2 tight sets

Richard Gasquet d. Milos Raonic in 2 tight sets

Alexandr Dolgopolov d. Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in 3 sets *I can’t decideeeee*

ATP Halle 2nd Round Predictions

Steve Johnson d. Florian Mayer in 3 sets

Ivo Karlovic d. Alexander Zverev in 3 sets

Tomas Berdych d. Borna Coric in 2 sets

Roger Federer d. Ernests Gulbis in 2 sets

Poll Results: 54% of readers correctly predicted that Mladenovic would beat Riske in Birmingham and 69% of readers correctly predicted that Wawrinka would beat Kyrgios in London.

10 thoughts on “WTA Birmingham, 2nd Round Preview: Sabine Lisicki v Belinda Bencic

  1. I know you guys are Lisicki fans but I’d love Bencic to win. I like watching her and I think she’s on the brink of a big breakthrough.

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  2. Krunic defeats Kuznetsova

    Marina Erakovic defeats Daniela Hantuchova

    Eugenie Bouchard defeats Kristina Mladenovic

    Michelle Larcher de Brito defeats Ana Ivanovic(even if Ana wins odds will move upside down to make enough killing)

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    • I could certainly see MLdB beating Ivanovic. She plays so well on grass and could really have a Lisicki like run at Wimbledon one of these years. I remember watching her play Kuznetsova last year and she completely bossed her round the court.

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      • Ana Ivanovic can loose any time with anyone on any surface and you need real skills to do this; not everyone can do that.She is such a sweet darling for Punters this year.

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  3. How tragic for Ana Ivanovic and Caroline Garcia! Ana needs to turn her season round immediately or she’s going to drop out of the top ten again…

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  4. Well done Sabine,27 aces in your straight sets win over Bencic.Hoping that Azarenka’s foot injury isn’t a serious injury and she can recover in time for Wimbledon.

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