WTA Brisbane, 2nd Round Preview for Tuesday: Garbiñe Muguruza v Daria Kasatkina

Muguruza

Second round action will begin at the Brisbane International on Tuesday with the match of the day adorning the night session as the number four seed, Garbiñe Muguruza will play Daria Kasatkina. The winner will advance to a first ever quarter-final in Brisbane.

Muguruza opened her 2017 campaign with a gritty win over Sam Stosur, 7-5 6-7(2) 7-5. Stosur led 4-2 in the third set and even had a pair of break points for the double break at 3-1. Stosur looked sharp, a significant improvement on the way she had ended 2016, and was winning a lot of free points on her serve. Muguruza knucked down midway through the third set and actually seemed to take on board the advice from her coach, Sam Sumyk on the changeover by hitting a little more cross-court to drag Stosur out wide. All in all, it was an encouraging result for Muguruza.

Kasatkina earnt her first win of 2017 on Sunday with a 6-3 6-3 victory over Irina-Camelia Begu. It was an excellent start against a dangerous opponent; Kasatkina was serving well and constructing the points with intelligence, winning many of the longer rallies. Begu didn’t have her best day though, missing a handful of sitters and looking a little sluggish on the move. Kasatkina needed just the one break of serve in the first set as she broke through in a seven deuce game where Begu had saved numerous break points with some clutch play.

The Romanian player did have a brief resurgence in the second set as she recovered an early break to win three games on the trot. Kasatkina had been up *40-0 in the game where she was broken and had her coach, Vladmir Platenik on the court. Kasatkina refocused and won the last three games of the match to wrap up the win in 90 minutes.

Head-to-head record: In their only previous match, Muguruza beat Kasatkina on the clay courts of Marrakech in 2015, 6-4 6-1.

Interesting stat: Both players served well during their first round matches; Kasatkina won 87% of her first serve points against Begu and dropped just four points behind it, while Muguruza hit 11 aces and was broken just twice by Stosur in 18 service games.

Final thoughts: I’m loving this match-up and it will be a good early-season test for both players. Kasatkina has been vulnerable against big hitters who can take the game away from her so it will be interesting to see what type of gameplan she implements to counter that. Muguruza likes to come forward and although it has been an approach with varied success, it’s one of the reasons why I am leaning towards the Spaniard in what I think will be a closely contested match.

Photo in this post by mootennis.com

7 thoughts on “WTA Brisbane, 2nd Round Preview for Tuesday: Garbiñe Muguruza v Daria Kasatkina

  1. I’d love for Darka to give Muguruza a fight, but I do think Garbine will prove too strong for her just now. You can’t afford to have nerves against Muguruthless.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. sounds like Muguruza vs Stosur was a good match? I have a free month on Dazn, so I’m probably gonna rewatch that match 🙂
    It’s somehow ironic that I’ve decided last year in automn to subscribe to a streaming service in order to watch all the matches (preferably Tennis TV) and now there’s nothing for the WTA 😛

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      • Just subscribed yesterday. As far as I’ve seen there are highlights and there was the full match of Rogers vs Bouchard available (Re-Live function). For today, there is 9 hours rewatchable material avaible 😉
        If you can get a working VRN connection you should subscribe for a month. Dazn also includes Auckland and Shenzhen from Thursday onwards as well as ATP Brisbane (also from Thursday onwards).

        Like

  3. I want Daria Kasatkina to win this but she can struggle against the big hitters and still lacks experience so heart says Daria but my brain thinks that Muguruza will be too powerful and she will win especially if she serves as well as she did in her previous match.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Interested to see if Ashleigh Barty can make things interesting against Kerber tomorrow. She’s a nervy little thing but she’s got a great game, very Sam Stosur-esque, with a great serve, big spin forehand and wicked backhand slice. If she comes out without any pressure or expectations she could definitely trouble Kerber!

    Like

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