All the winners lost just 5 games. Hopefully we get some exciting 3 setters during the Round Robin stage.
Serena def Kerber 64 61
Serena exacts revenge on Kerber who was the last player to beat her. Showing no signs of rust, Serena dominated despite getting only 50% of 1st serves in. The field has to beware as once that percentage goes up, it'll be harder to beat her. Serena tends to struggle against lower ranked players at slams then dominates the elite, will we see her rampage through this field?
Radwanska def Kvitova 63 62
I must say this result surprised me somewhat. I was predicting Petra to win having never lost to Radwanska. I personally watched this entire match and Petra was a nervous wreck and made a huge number of unforced errors. Radwanska was at her consistent best and carefully placed the ball around the court and waited for the error. This win will probably bring some confidence back into Radwanska's game, this being her first top 10 win in quite a while. Perhaps Radwanska might now become a contender for this title?
Sharapova def Errani 63 62
Very expected results. Errani just doesn't have the firepower nor the variety to hurt Sharapova. She should be happy just to have qualified and enjoy the moment and perhaps focus on winning the doubles. Expected victory for Maria to prepare her for 2 much tougher matches before she gets destroyed by either Serena or Victoria ;)
Day 2 Predictions:
Serena vs Li Na
Li Na has played Serena close throughout the years, even managing a few victories. Li Na is wildly unpredictable and does have the weaponry to hurt Serena. Serena needs to get more than 65% first serves in if she wants a comfortable victory, if not she'll have to work much harder.
Prediction: Serena in 2 sets
Azarenka vs Kerber
The in-form player of the field takes on the most improved player of the season. Both players don't have a huge serve and their groundstrokes are somewhat light weight compared to the likes of Serena, Petra and Maria. Victoria is just too consistent for Angelique to hurt her and will it'll be another easy victory for the Belarusian making her 2012 YEC debut.
Prediction: Azarenka in 2 sets
Radwanska vs Sharapova
The match of the day. Radwanska won her biggest career title in Miami, manhandling Maria in that final. Maria has won more matches this season by her shear tenacity and fight rather than clean hitting and huge serves. This match will hopefully be the 3 setter we've been looking for. Radwanska should be more confident after her huge victory over Kvitova and will be looking to build on that win. Maria, with the number 1 ranking in reach will look to solidify her top position in the group with a win here. I can see both players winning this but ultimately it'll come to how well Maria serves and how many errors Radwanksa can draw out of her. Radwanska needs to be at her tenacious best and run now every ball and mix up the play to keep Maria off balance. Maria needs to serve well and be consistent and try to step into the court and hit through Radwanska and of course keep her errors to the bare minimal.
Predictions: Toss up, I underestimated Radwanska in her first match so I'm going to go with a 3 set victory for the Pole to make up for that. (Though I've probably ended up jinxing her chances with this prediction)
Enjoy the tennis!