Sunday, 27 July 2014

Stanford, Washington day 1: US Open series begins

Stanford schedule of play:

Washington schedule of play:

Match focus:

Kimiko Date-Krumm vs. Karolina Pliskova

The evergreen Kimiko Date-Krumm continues to give young girls fits with her unorthodox game. The only thing that's holding her back is her lac of finishing touch. The Japanese had lost too many matches due to her nerves and weak serve. She has a chance against the lanky Pliskova, as her low flat strokes will cause the Czech problems. However, as usual, I think Kimiko will buckle at the important moments and Karolina will advance to the next round.

Pick: Pliskova in 3 sets

Ajla Tomljanovic vs. Andrea Petkovic

Rising star Alja Tomljanovic has defected to Australia, but is still competing under the Croatian flag for regular events. Let's see if this defection will cause her some distractions. Petkovic has been playing well for the past months, winning a title in Bad Gastein despite not playing her best. The German will be the slight favourite here, as Alja is showing signs of slowing down. Still, Andrea must play her best to overcome the big serving Alja, as the Australian/Croatian can hit a mean ball. It should be a close match.

Pick: Petkovic in 3 sets

Julia Goerges vs. Taylor Townsend

Julia Goerges had a good season in 2011, and prompty faded into oblivion. There were signs of her coming back with sporadic good wins, but her losses to unknown entities kept coming. At this point of her career, it's almost certain to say that the German will not be back in the top 20. Her strokes are just too erratic and there's no game plan at all except wallop the ball at full speed. Taylor Townsend is America's new hope with her exciting all court game and deceptively good movement. With Julia's confidence at an all time low, Taylor should be able to capitalize on that and gain momentum from the home crowd support. Look out for Taylor.

Pick: Townsend in 2 sets

Sure win bets: Samantha Stosur, Madison Keys, Alison Riske
Upset alert: Sorana Cirstea, Caroline Garcia, Vania King

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