Simona Halep vs Petra Martic, Indian Wells QF Preview

BNP Paribas Open, 🇺🇸🌴 Indian Wells QF Preview
🇷🇴 (1) Simona Halep vs 🇭🇷 Petra Martic

An interesting quarter-final clash in the Californian desert sees Simona Halep come up against Petra Martic. Halep and Martic have been two of the most consistent players in 2018. Halep has a 17/1 win/loss record in 2018 whilst Martic has amassed an 11/3 win/loss record thus far in 2018. Martic has already taken down some big names in Indian Wells but will need to raise her level even further if she is to upset the world number 1.

Simona Halep of Romania in action at the 2018 BNP Paribas Open WTA Premier Mandatory tennis tournament

Simona Halep is one of just two former champions left in the draw at the BNP Paribas Open. The Romanian has not been at her best throughout the opening week of the tournament but has displayed her new mental strength in order to progress to the quarter-finals despite not playing great tennis. Halep started the event with an opening round bye before beating Kristyna Pliskova 6-4 6-4. The 2015 champion survived a huge scare in the third round where she overcame a slow start to beat Caroline Dolehide 1-6 7-6 6-2. Halep secured her spot in the quarter-finals with a 7-5 6-1 win over Qiang Wang in what was a scrappy match. Halep will hope to pick up her level as she moves into the business end of the tournament.

Petra Martic has become a big tournament specialist. Martic has reached the round 16 at Roland Garros, Wimbledon and the Australian Open in the last 12 months. Martic is now into the quarter-finals at a premier mandatory event for the first time. Martic has impressively moved into the final 8 at the BNP Paribas Open without a dropping a set. The 27-year-old started the week with a comfortable win over Tatjana Maria before eliminating the 25th seeded Barbora Strycova with a 7-5 6-4 win. Martic then claimed a big upset as she beat the 6th seeded Jelena Ostapenko 6-3 6-3 before securing her spot in the quarter-finals with a 6-3 7-6 win over Marketa Vondrousova. Martic did well to close out her fourth round in straight sets after she failed to serve out the match late in the second set.

The head-to-head record between the pair is split at 1 win apiece. Their most recent match took place in Guangzhou in 2015, Halep won that match 6-4 6-2. Martic’s victory over the Romanian came way back in 2011 in Copenhagen where the Croatian won 6-3 5-7 7-5. Clearly Halep is the more accomplished player but Martic has proven to be a dangerous opponent for many top players this year, can the Croatian cause a big upset?

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Marketa Vondrousova vs Petra Martic, Indian Wells R4 Preview

BNP Paribas Open, 🇺🇸🌴 Indian Wells R4 Preview
🇨🇿 Marketa Vondrousova vs. 🇭🇷 Petra Martic

An outstanding opportunity presents itself to Marketa Vondrousova and Petra Martic when they meet at the fourth round stage of the BNP Paribas Open on Tuesday. Both Vondrousova and Martic are in uncharted territory at a premier mandatory level event, both will be fighting to reach the quarter-finals at this level of event for the very first time, a big match for both ladies. Who will make this most of this opportunity?

Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic in action at the 2018 BNP Paribas Open WTA Premier Mandatory tennis tournament

Vondrousova and Martic have both strolled through the draw at the BNP Paribas Open, both have yet to drop a set on route to the fourth round, both have overcome higher fancied opponents to reach the round of 16.

Vondrousova started the week with a comfortable win over Madison Brengle before claiming one of the biggest wins of her career as she eliminated the 11th seeded Johanna Konta with a hard-fought 7-6 6-4 victory. Vondrousova confirmed her spot in the final 16 at a premier mandatory event for the first time with a surprisingly comfortable 6-2 6-2 win over Aryna Sabalenka.

Petra Martic is becoming a bit of a specialist at big events. Martic has now reached the fourth round stage at Roland Garros, Wimbledon, the Australian Open and now the BNP Paribas Open within the last 12 months. On the 3 previous occasions, Martic was unable to take the next step, but Tuesday’s match against Vondrousova looms as Martic’s best chance to do so. Martic is in great form this week, the Croatian started the event with a comfortable win over Tatjana Maria before claiming back-to-back upsets over seeded opponents, a 7-5 6-4 win over Barbora Strycova and a 6-3 6-3 Jelena Ostapenko.

It was Martic who won the only previous match between the pair, a 7-6 6-3 victory earlier this year in Auckland.

To view my Analysis / Prediction for this match: Click here

Petra Martic vs Elise Mertens, Australian Open R4 Preview

Australian Open 🇦🇺 R4 Preview
🇭🇷 Petra Martic vs 🇧🇪 Elise Mertens

An unexpected fourth round match-up at Melbourne Park on Sunday sees Petra Martic take on Elise Mertens. This is a huge opportunity for Martic and Mertens, both ladies will be playing to reach the quarter-final stage of a Grand Slam for the very first time. To add to the tension, this will be the first career meeting between Martic and Mertens.

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Petra Martic has made a good habit of saving her best tennis for Grand Slam events. Martic came through the qualifying draw to reach the round of 16 at both Roland Garros and Wimbledon last year and now finds herself at the round 16 stage at Melbourne Park for the first time. Martic started the event with a couple of tough straight set wins over Alison Van Uytvanck and Irina-Camelia Begu. Martic confirmed her spot in the round 16 with a 6-3 3-6 7-5 win over Lesia Kumkhum. The final set of Martic’s win over Kumkhum was one of the most entertaining sets of tennis of the tournament thus far. The pair remained on serve until 5-5 where Martic finally broke the Kumkhum serve before she successfully served out the match. Martic kept her cool under pressure very impressively in the final set against Kumkhum.

Elise Mertens is in awesome form. Mertens arrived in Melbourne on a high having successfully defended her Hobart title. Mertens has cruised through to the round of 16 in Melbourne without dropping a set, the first time she has reached this stage of a Grand Slam. Mertens started the event with wins over Viktoria Kuzmova and Daria Gavrilova before securing her spot in the round of 16 with a 7-5 6-4 win over Alize Cornet in brutally hot conditions.

This will be the first career meeting between the pair.

Luksika Kumkhum vs Petra Martic, Australian Open R3 Preview

Australian Open 🇦🇺 R3 Preview
🇹🇭 (Q) Luksika Kumkhum vs 🇨🇿 Petra Martic

Lesia Kumkhum and Petra Martic will face off in an unlikely third round match-up at Melbourne Park. Kumkhum produced one of the biggest upsets of the tournament in the second round as she convincingly defeated the in-form Belinda Bencic in straight sets. Petra Martic also reached the third round with a win over a more accomplished player, defeating Irina-Camelia Begu in straight sets. This will be the first career meeting between Kumkhum and Martic, probably the biggest match of both ladies respective careers.

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Lesia Kumkhum has already won 5 matches in Melbourne having come through the qualifying draw to reach the main draw. Kumkhum has won all 5 of her matches this week in straight sets. In the main draw, the Thai player defeated Johanna Larsson 6-3 7-5 in the opening round before shocking Belinda Bencic with an inspired performance to win 6-1 6-3. Kumkhum’s victory over Bencic was up there in terms of the best wins of her career.

Petra Martic has had good success at the Grand Slam level in recent times. Martic reached the fourth round stage at Roland Garros and Wimbledon last year and now has a great opportunity to do the same thing in Melbourne. Martic started the week with a 7-6 6-3 win over Alison Van Uytvanck before securing her spot in the third round with a hard-fought 6-4 7-6 win over Irina-Camelia Begu. Martic has done well in the important moments this week, especially in her win over Begu. The Romanian served for the second set but Martic fought hard, saving 3 set points before forcing a tiebreak which she eventually won.

This will be the first career meeting between the pair, both will be aiming to reach the second week at Melbourne Park for the first time.

Agnieszka Radwanska vs Petra Martic, U.S Open R1 Preview

US Open, 🇺🇸🍎🗽🚕 R1 Preview + Prediction
(10) 🇵🇱 Agnieszka Radwanska vs 🇭🇷 Petra Martic

Agnieszka Radwanska will begin her 2017 U.S Open campaign with a potentially dangerous opening round clash against Croatia’s Petra Martic. The U.S Open has traditionally been one of Aga’s least successful major tournaments and Pole has generally been far from her best in 2017. However, Radwanska showed signs of improvements last week in New Haven and in a field that is quite open, Radwanska may be able to go on her first deep run at a Grand Slam in 2017. Radwanska has a perfect 2-0 record over Martic, nevertheless, the Croatian has shown in 2017 that she is a threat at major tournaments.

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Daria Gavrilova vs Petra Martic, Wimbledon R1 Preview

Wimbledon 🇬🇧💂🍓 Day 2, R1 Match Preview:
(20) 🇦🇺 Daria Gavrilova vs (Q) 🇭🇷 Petra Martic

With Sam Stosur not in action at SW19, Daria Gavrilova will be the only seeded Australian in the main draw. Gavrilova will begin her 2017 Wimbledon campaign with what looks like a favourable draw, Gavrilova will come up against Croatian qualifier Petra Martic on Tuesday. Grass has always been Gavrilova’s least preferred surface, whilst Petra Martic will be sharp having come through the qualifying draw, this looms as a potential upset.

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