AO Scores – 85/ 122 (70%)
AO Second Saturday Final Prediction
Day 13 Scores – 1/1
S.Williams d. V.Williams in 2 sets
AO Second Saturday Final Poll
AO Second Thursday SF Predictions
Day 11 Scores – 2/2
Thoughts about the semi-finals in my latest Set Points article for day 10
V.Williams d Vandeweghe in 3 sets
S.Williams d. Lucic-Baroni in 2 sets
AO Second Thursday SF Polls
AO Second Wednesday QF Predictions
Day 10 Scores – 0/2
Pliskova d. Lucic-Baroni in 2 sets
Konta d. S.Williams in 3 sets
AO Second Wednesday QF Polls – Bottom Half
AO Second Tuesday QF Predictions
Day 9 Scores – 0/2
Muguruza d. Vandeweghe in 2 sets – Preview
Pavlyuchenkova d. V.Williams in 3 sets – Thoughts in my latest Set Points article for Day 8
AO Second Tuesday QF Polls – Top Half
AO Second Monday R4 Predictions – Bottom Half
Day 8 Scores – 4/4
Thoughts about the top two matches in my latest Set Points article for day 7
Pliskova d. Gavrilova in 2 sets
Lucic-Baroni d. Brady in 3 sets
Konta d. Makarova in 2 sets – Preview
S.Williams d. Strycova in 3 sets – Preview
AO Second Monday R4 Polls – Bottom Half
AO Middle Sunday R4 Predictions – Top Half
Day 7 Scores – 2/4
Thoughts about all four matches in my latest Set Points article for day 6
Kerber d. Vandeweghe in 3 sets
Muguruza d. Cirstea in 2 sets
V.Williams d. Barthel in 2 sets
Kuznetsova d. Pavlyuchenkova in 2 sets
AO Middle Sunday R4 Polls – Top Half
AO First Satuday R3 Predictions – Top Half
Day 6 Scores – 5/8
Pliskova d. Ostapenko in 2 sets – This is a really interesting match and I did think about two or three sets. Ostapenko has looked sharp in 2017 so far and Pliskova hasn’t been tested at all. The pressure is on Pliskova but I do think she’ll rise to the occasion. I’d expect one very close set where perhaps Ostapenko is in the lead for a time. Pliskova won their only previous match in Cincy last year, 6-4 6-1, which I remember it was a pretty poor match!
Bacsinszky d. Gavrilova in 3 sets – Gavrilova has won both their previous matches which surprises me because I feel like Bacsinszky should own this match-up. Gavrilova won their most recent match-up in Beijing, 4-6 6-0 6-4 where she went on a huge winning streak of games in the middle of the match. Of all the matches so far this week, this is probably the first one where I feel very indecisive as to who will win. I’m going against the head-to-head with a fresher-than-Beijing, Bacsinszky nicking it.
Vesnina d. Brady in 2 sets – Vesnina has had a dream draw but fair play to her for coming through it so far. Brady showed against Watson what she is capable of but I think Vesnina will take this in straight sets.
Lucic-Baroni d. Sakkari in 3 sets – Honestly not a clue haha! Sakkari won their only previous match in New Haven last year and we all know that MLB can go from being excellent to erratic in a very short space of time. I’m going to go for MLB as this will be a brand new experience for Sakkari in the third round of a Slam and i’m not sure how she will cope with that.
Cibulkova d. Makarova in 3 sets – Cibulkova’s toughest match of the week so far although she has won all three of their previous encounters. We are dealing with the Bourne-GOAT here though!
Konta d. Wozniacki in 3 sets – Preview
Strycova d. Garcia in 3 sets – Not as confident in favour of Strycova as I have been for previous matches against Garcia. Strycova won all three matches they played in 2017 but the last two both went the distance. I was tempted to go for Garcia here but after a crushing day of predictions on day 5, i’m playing it more safe today. Strycova’s reliability also…
S.Williams d. Gibbs on 2 sets – With respect to Gibbs, I think this match-up on paper is more straightforward for Serena than her first two matches against Bencic and Safarova so I wonder if she may take her foot off the gas a tad. Still Serena in two though I expect Nicole to give it some welly.
AO First Saturday R3 Polls – Bottom Half
AO First Friday R3 Predictions – Top Half
Day 5 Scores – 3/8
Kerber d. Kr. Pliskova in 2 sets – I managed to watch some of Kerber’s second round match back against Witthoeft and was taken aback by how her serve fell apart at the end of the second set. While an interesting match awaits against Kr. Pliskova, I think that Kerber will be able to exploit the Czech players’ movement.
Bouchard d. Vandeweghe in 2 sets – Bouchard won their only previous match in 2015 at Indian Wells, 6-3 6-2. I was impressed with Bouchard during her second round win over Peng where she kept a pretty steady level throughout the whole match. I’m going for Bouchard in straights.
Riske d. Cirstea in 3 sets – Cirstea has won their last two matches on tour. Both players snapped sizeable losing streaks in R1 Slam matches so a big opportunity for both. Riske’s form has been steadily improving and I think she’s ready to convert on it with a second week Slam run.
Muguruza d. Sevastova in 2 sets – Muguruza will be wary of Sevastova after what happened at the US Open last year where the Latvian player caused a second round upset. I think this will help focus Garbiñe who has been the far more impressive of the two in 2017 so far.
Barty d. Barthel in 3 sets – Liking this match, a feel-good affair! I’m rooting for Mona but she makes me nervous with how nervous she gets at closing out sets and matches. I’ll be surprised if she’s able to close out a win against a home crowd for Barty.
😂😂😂 Duan d. V.Williams in 3 sets – What on earth am I doing? I think Venus is vulnerable having pulled out of doubles with the elbow injury that affected her in Auckland. Duan has had a superb start to the year and confidence will be high. I’m taking a risk with this one!
Svitolina d, Pavlyuchenkova in 3 sets – Preview
Kuznetsova d. Jankovic in 2 sets – Rolling back the years! Disappointed this match didn’t get Rod Laver Arena as it deserved. Pleasantly surprised that JJ has reached the third round. I think Kuznetsova’s playing at a much higher level and while I wouldn’t rule out a mini-meltdown, I think Kuznetsova wins this. Jankovic did win their most recent match in Guangzhou towards the end of 2015 and the Serb leads the head-to-head, 8-6.
AO First Friday R3 Polls – Top Half
AO First Thursday R2 Predictions – Bottom Half
Day 4 Scores – 10/14
Pliskova d. Blinkova in 2 sets – Super impressed with Blinkova’s results this week but I think Pliskova will be too strong and prevail in straights.
Ostapenko d. Putintseva in 2 sets – Preview
Konjuh d. Gavrilova in 2 sets – Gavrilova did well to get through her first round match against Broady but my feeling is that Konjuh might overwhelm the Aussie in this one.
Bacsinszky d. Kovinic in 2 sets – A tough three set win over Giorgi in her first match of the year was just what Bacsinszky needed. Kovinic has game but if it were to get close, I think Bacsinszky’s gritty defence will pull her through.
Vesnina d. Minella in 2 sets – Surprisingly a first-time match-up. Vesnina looked good in her first round win (from the short highlights package!) and I think she can work her way into form with this draw.
Watson d. Brady in 3 sets – A huge chance for Watson but I worry this may add to the nerves. Brady is a very competent player and has won four matches after coming through qualifying.
Cornet d. Sakkari in 3 sets – This should be an intense battle! Liking Cornet to scrap her way through if necessary and that the wins in Brisbane will give her the confidence to prevail.
Radwanska d. Lucic-Baroni in 3 sets – One of those DANGER match-ups for the more defensively-minded players like Radwanska. I fancy Lucic-Baroni to cause a scare but Radwanska will survive. Their two previous matches both ended in retirements.
Cibulkova d. Hsieh in 2 sets – Hsieh can be a tricky customer but Cibulkova in straights.
Makarova d. Errani in 3 sets – Interesting match, both players won their first matches of the year in the first round. Makarova leads the head-to-head, 4-3 and i’d give her the edge purely on her record in Melbourne. Makarova has not been at all convincing of late and always seems stressed on court so I could see it being a tense three setter.
Wozniacki d. Vekic in 2 sets – Wozniacki beat Vekic four years ago at the Australian Open, 6-1 6-4. I’d expect a similar result for Wozniacki. I can’t believe this match got on Rod Laver Arena!
Konta d. Osaka in 2 sets – Going to wake up for this one! I’m going Konta in two with one tight set. Konta has been serving and returning exceptionally well, and Osaka hasn’t played many matches due to the wrist injury. Osaka though is still a bit of an unknown quantity against the seeds so i’m eager to see what she can bring to this match.
Strycova d. Petkovic in 3 sets – A nice match-up, Petkovic leads the head-to-head 3-2, but Strycova won their last match at Indian Wells last year, 7-5 in the decider. Strycova is just so damn reliable of late that i’d actually be surprised if Petkovic wins this despite starting the year in decent form.
Garcia d. Dodin in 2 sets – Originally went for Dodin in my draw but i’ve had a change of heart. I didn’t realise but Garcia wasn’t injured during the first two weeks of the year but actually decided to take longer to prepare for the new season after a gruelling year.
Gibbs d. Falconi in 2 sets – Big opportunity for both, favouring Gibbs who has won all three previous encounters.
AO First Thursday R2 Polls – Bottom Half
AO First Wednesday R2 Predictions – Top Half
Day 3 Scores – 13/16
Kerber d. Witthoeft in 2 sets – Third meeting and all three have been at the Slams. Kerber has won both matches in straight sets with just one of their four sets being close. I still feel Kerber is a little vulnerable but I don’t anticipate Witthoeft causing too many problems.
Kr. Pliskova d. Begu in 3 sets – Should be a close match depending slightly on Pliskova’s recovery after her movement was impeded in her first round win (wasn’t sure if it was heat related?). Begu has won their two previous encounters but both went the distance. I like the way that Pliskova is playing and has been progressing on tour so going for the Czech player.
Bouchard d. Peng in 2 sets – Bouchard still makes me wary and I do like Peng’s game; however, i’m feeling that Bouchard should be able to deal with Peng’s game. Bouchard won their only previous match, 6-2 6-2 in 2014.
Vandeweghe d. Parmentier in 2 sets – Despite the nauseous spell in the second set of her first round win over Vinci, Vandeweghe looked quite impressive. Her weapons, the serve and the forehand, seem to be firing so i’d guess she will be too powerful for Parmentier.
Suárez Navarro d. Cirstea in 3 sets – Fun stat is that Cirstea won their first three encounters although the pair haven’t played since 2009. I think I read that CSN said she was surprised at winning her first round match due to the shoulder injury. Cirstea definitely has chances but I wonder if she can keep it consistent enough to break down the Spaniard.
Riske d. Zhang in 3 sets – Preview
Kucova d. Sevastova in 3 sets – Sevastova has won all five matches they’ve played but going on instinct with this one and Kucova. Sevastova has been shaky since the US Open and will be vulnerable having won her first match via retirement. Their last match in Kaohsiung was decided on a third set tiebreak.
Muguruza d. Crawford in 2 sets – A little wary of Muguruza’s thigh injury although she seemed positive and at ease in her press conference after her first round win. Crawford has a big game with little margin. If Muguruza’s off, perhaps a shock, but i’m definitely not brave enough to go anywhere near it!
Barty d. Rogers in 3 sets – Huge opportunity for both players in what will be a first time match-up. I think both have been playing well but edging towards Barty who I think will be able to use the crowd to her advantage.
Barthel d. Puig in 3 sets – Please be aware I am a fan of Barthel so I perhaps see her in a more positive light than most! While she took a major fall in the rankings in 2016 due to health issues, she seems to be fully fit again and has successfully qualified for the main draws in Auckland and Melbourne. Puig scored a much-needed first round win over Tig but I expect this to be a much tougher match. On the fence but I think Barthel has a shot so i’ve taken the risk.
Duan d. Lepchenko in 2 sets – Duan has been very impressive at the start of 2017 and she beat Lepchenko in Sydney qualifying last week, 6-1 6-4. Of course, McHale was in the same position having beaten Kucova in Sydney and lost in Melbourne so expect the unexpected!
V.Williams d. Voegele in 2 sets – Venus is still seemingly finding her game in 2017 but this is a good draw for her. I don’t feel this match as an upset alert.
Svitolina d. Boserup in 2 sets – First time match-up, not concerned for Svitolina.
Pavlyuchenkova d. Vikhlyantseva in 2 sets – Expect a similar result Pavlyuchenkova’s first round match with one tight and one easy set.
Goerges d. Jankovic in 2 sets – Jankovic leads the head-to-head, 3-1 and all their previous matches have been decided in straight sets. I’ve been super impressed with Goerges so far this year and her last two wins on tour have been from a set and a break down. I think Goerges, who has done at the AO before, will find her A-game and win this.
Kuznetsova d. Fourlis in 2 sets – A great opportunity for Fourlis but going for Kuznetsova in straights.
AO First Wednesday R2 Polls – Top Half
AO First Tuesday R1 Predictions – Third Quarter
Day 2 Scores – 13/15
Pliskova d. Sorribes Tormo in 2 sets – Pliskova for the win in straights.
Niculescu d. Blinkova in 3 sets – This match intrigues me. Blinkova is one to watch for this year. The 18-year-old has done extremely well to qualify for her first Slam main draw. Niculescu has played quite a few matches having reached the Hobart final and while I have gone for Niculescu, I did consider Blinkova.
Ostapenko d. Zhu in 2 sets – Ostapenko ended 2016 in wretched form but began 2017 in much more positive spirits in Auckland, albeit with a cold.
Putintseva d. Arruabarrena in 2 sets – Arruabarrena won their only previous match, 7-6(8) in a third set tiebreak back in 2013. Putintseva has improved a great deal and I think this match-up will suit her. Focus is still a bit of a concern.
Gavrilova d. Broady in 2 sets – I like Gavrilova with a home crowd and she said in press the bigger the stadium she plays on, the better! I think she will be able to neutralise Broady’s weapons.
Konjuh d. Mladenovic in 2 sets – Very intriguing match, surprised they are both unseeded! Definitely siding with Konjuh as Mladenovic has been so erratic in the past year.
S.Zheng d. Kovinic in 3 sets – Toss up and could see it going either way but favouring Zheng despite things not going her way of late. Zheng has lost eight of her last nine matches and 13 of her last 15 three set matches. Kovinic reached the semi-finals of Tianjin last year but otherwise, hasn’t done a great deal away from the clay.
Bacsinszky d. Giorgi in 3 sets – I think Giorgi will make a fast start but Bacsinszky will find a way back into the match with her variety winning through in the end.
Vesnina d. Bogdan in 2 sets – Rough start to the year for Vesnina but with this draw, I think she will shake off the rust and reach the second week.
Minella d. Linette in 3 sets – No strong feelings, Minella won their only previous match at the French Open in 2011 but on a different surface and so long ago.
Larsson d. Brady in 3 sets – Possible rankings upset, I like Brady’s game and was impressed when I watched her in Stanford vs. Cornet.
Watson d. Stosur in 3 sets – A good match-up for Stosur as she leads the head-to-head, 2-0, but being in Australia and on such a poor run, i’ve gone for Watson. An open draw for whoever comes through.
Cornet d. Georges in 2 sets – Cornet playing well enough so that this shouldn’t become a three set epic.
Sakkari d. Kontaveit in 2 sets – A nice match-up, favouring Sakkari as Kontaveit has been injured and hasn’t played yet in 2017.
Lucic-Baroni d. Wang in 3 sets – Wang’s a solid player but Lucic-Baroni has the weapons.
Radwanska d. Pironkova in 2 sets – The head-to-head is interesting with Pironkova having some notable wins over Radwanska, but I think the world number three takes this one reasonably comfortably.
AO First Tuesday R1 Predictions – Fourth Quarter
Day 2 Scores – 14/15
Cibulkova d. Allertova in 2 sets – Allertova’s made a poor start to the year so it would come out of the blue if she comes alive in this match.
Hsieh d. Knapp in 2 sets – Knapp hasn’t played since the US Open, while Hsieh won the Dubai $100k ITF in December.
Errani d. Ozaki in 3 sets – Again the draw gods want this match as it was supposed to happen in Hobart. I think it will be a good match-up for Errani because Ozaki is a defensively-minded player from previous watches. It depends on Errani’s fitness having been injured in Hobart.
Makarova d. Alexandrova in 2 sets – Makarova looking for her first win in 2017. As the Bourne-GOAT, I think she will get it!
Wozniacki d. Ar. Rodionova in 2 sets – Wozniacki for the win.
Vekic d. Cabrera in 3 sets – Vekic won their only previous match last year in Launceston 6-3 2-6 6-3. Cabrera had a great win over Doi in Hobart but going for Vekic who had a couple of solid wins in qualifying for Sydney.
Osaka d. Kumkhum in 2 sets – A little wary of Osaka’s wrist injury but she did post on Twitter that it wasn’t serious and just needed a few days of rest. I think her serve and baseline power overwhelms Kumkhum.
Konta d. Flipkens in 2 sets – Flipkens won their last match in Monterrey but Konta leads the head-to-head, 2-1. I wouldn’t be surprised if Konta starts slowly and takes time to adjust to the new conditions but not feeling an upset alert at all.
Strycova d. Kulichkova in 3 sets – I was really hoping Kulichkova would land in the third quarter with Vesnina/Stosur where I would have considered her to the second week. Instead she gets one of the toughest qualifier placements. Perhaps a battle in the heat but Strycova is so reliable and often gets the job done, sometimes with a detour!
Petkovic d. Day in 2 sets – Tempted to go for three sets because Day has a lot of potential but perhaps too early to be making an impact. Petkovic has had some good wins so far in 2017 but also some poor losses. Expect she’ll get through this one.
Dodin d. Buyukakcay in 2 sets – Buyukakcay has lost six of her last seven matches, while Dodin is winless in 2017. Dodin has a huge game so expect the unexpected! I’ll go for Dodin to keep the ball in more-often-than-not.
Garcia d. Bondarenko in 3 sets – Expecting a tight three setter with bundles of nerves and drama. Garcia to pull through in her first competitive match of 2017.
Babos d. Gibbs in 2 sets – Babos has been up a set in her two matches of 2017 and lost her way to lose in three. A big match for her but I think she takes this against Gibbs who hasn’t built on her promising start to 2016.
Falconi d. Han in 3 sets – The pair are tied at 1-1 in their head-to-head with both previous matches going three sets.
S.Williams d. Bencic in 3 sets – I’m giving BB a set, I was really encouraged by her feelings about the match in her press conference. I think it will be a great match and both players will raise their level for each other.
AO First Tuesday R1 Polls
AO First Monday R1 Predictions – First Quarter
Day 1 Scores – 8/15
Kerber d. Tsurenko in 2 sets – Tsurenko’s a good player on her day but has pulled out of both tournaments she has played in 2017 due to a viral illness. It wouldn’t surprise me if this ended in a withdrawal/retirement.
Witthoeft d. Hozumi in 2 sets – Qualifiers are always dangerous as they have played three matches and are used to the conditions. Admittedly, I don’t know a great deal about Hozumi who is one year older than Witthoeft.
Kr. Pliskova d. Golubic in 3 sets – Four places apart in the ranking at 58 and 62 respectively, these two have improved significantly in the past year. Golubic has only played one match and i’m leaning towards Pliskova in a three set tussle.
Shvedova d. Begu in 2 sets – Both are winless in 2017 and the head-to-head is tied at 1-1. Not much insight on this one other than the better player on the day wins! I’m going for the upset.
Kasatkina d. Peng in 3 sets – I’d fancy this to be a tricky match for Kasatkina. Peng is a clean ball striker and has done marvellously well to break back into the world’s top 100 following a lengthy time on the sidelines for a back injury. Kasatkina to pull through in three sets.
Bouchard d. Chirico in 3 sets – I was tempted to go for Chirico here as I don’t see a massive gulf in quality in the pair. Bouchard is the more aggressive hitter and it will likely come down to how accurate she is.
Doi d. Parmentier in 2 sets – Parmentier leads the head-to-head, 2-0, but their last match was over four years ago and since then, Doi is a vastly improved player.
Vinci d. Vandeweghe in 3 sets – I just wrote Vandeweghe for the win and it didn’t feel right! I’m on the fence with this one as Vandeweghe has beaten Vinci before and playing the Italian is very match-up based because of the way she plays. Their last match was on grass where Vandeweghe is more at home. I’ve gone against Vinci many times in the last year when she’s actually battled through. I’ll stick with Vinci.
Cepelova d. Suárez Navarro in 3 sets – I’ll take a gamble with the upset. Suárez Navarro hasn’t played any matches in 2017 due to a shoulder injury. Cepelova hasn’t done anything significant but has won three of her last four matches against top ten player so likes an upset!
Cirstea d. Khromacheva in 3 sets – Not much add to here, Cirstea seems more at home on the clay but I think she will edge this match.
Riske d. Brengle in 2 sets – Both had decent first weeks on tour with Riske reaching the final in Shenzhen and Brengle beating Serena to make the quarter-finals in Auckland. Riske leads the head-to-head, 3-0 and has generally been the more convincing of the pair in recent form and also stretching back into 2016.
Zhang d. Sasnovich in 2 sets – Sasnovich won their only previous match at Wimbledon in 2015 but going for an improved Zhang to win in straights.
Sevastova d. Hibino in 2 sets – Expecting some nerves from Sevastova who hasn’t won a match in quite a while but Hibino is a solid draw. Sevastova won their only previous match at an ITF vent in 2015.
McHale d. Kucova in 2 sets – McHale beat Kucova for the loss of just three games in Sydney qualifying. If she doesn’t overthink things, i’d fancy McHale to have a comfortable win.
Davis d. Crawford in 2 sets – Davis won, 6-4 6-1 when the pair played in Quebec City last year and there’s nothing to suggest in recent form that Crawford will mount a challenge. Crawford has a big game but Davis has been excellent since last year’s US Open and become very reliable.
Muguruza d. Erakovic in 2 sets – A few concerns about the thigh injury picked up in Brisbane but on paper, an ideal opener for Muguruza.
AO First Monday R1 Predictions – Second Quarter
Day 1 Scores – 10/16
Halep d. Rogers in 2 sets – I like the way that Rogers has started the year so I could see a tight set in this match. Halep in straights though.
Barty d. Beck in 2 sets – I like this match-up for a proactive Barty on home soil. Beck is 0-2 for the year.
Aiava d. Barthel in 3 sets – Really tough one to call and one of the most difficult from the first round. Pre-qualifier placement, I fancied Aiava to have a good run after such a positive showing in Brisbane. Barthel though is one of the strongest qualifiers and she didn’t drop a set through her three matches. I think this could be a well contested match and i’m going to stick with my initial high spirits for Aiava. Rooting for Mona though!
Puig d. Tig in 2 sets – Tough start to the year for Puig going up against two top 20 players in Svitolina and Wozniacki. From the WTA Insider podcast, it sounds like Puig may not be in the best place with her tennis. Puig for the win though.
Bertens d. Lepchenko in 2 sets – Could see this going the distance as Lepchenko is very capable. Going for Bertens after she managed a couple of wins in Hobart.
Duan d. Sramkova in 2 sets – High on Duan after a good start to the year.
Nara d. Voegele in 3 sets – Going with the head-to-head on this match with Nara winning all four previous encounters.
V.Williams d. Kozlova in 3 sets – Never quite know with Venus and how she is feeling. Kozlova gave her a tough match at the US Open.
Svitolina d. Voskoboeva in 2 sets – Voskoboeva has some big groundstrokes but a steady performance from Svitolina should be enough.
Boserup d. Schiavone in 3 sets – On the fence with this one and no strong feelings, gone for the qualifier.
King d. Vikhlyantseva in 3 sets – I don’t know a great deal about Vikhlyantseva. I like King’s game so i’ve gone for the American.
Pavlyuchenkova d. Rodina in 2 sets – Pavs can be vulnerable in these early match-ups but i’d be surprised if this is an early exit.
Siegemund d. Jankovic in 3 sets – Really tough one, both are winless in 2017. I’ve gone for Siegemund since i’m not quite sure about Jankovic physically after she had some feet issues in both Shenzhen and Hobart.
Goerges d. Siniakova in 3 sets – This is another tough one, want them both in the second round! Siniakova was so impressive in Shenzhen but I feel like Goerges, who made the last 16 in 2015, might nick this one.
Fourlis d. Tatishvili in 3 sets – Tatishvili hasn’t played a match since Wimbledon due to an ankle injury, while Fourlis is playing her first Slam main draw after winning the AO wildcard play-off. I’ll take Fourlis in Australia.
Kuznetsova d. Duque-Mariño in 2 sets – Kuznetsova for the win.