White Group - (2) Maria Sharapova vs (8) Caroline Wozniacki
The white group kicks off on Tuesday with a bang when Maria Sharapova takes on Caroline Wozniacki. Maria will be desperate to avenge her loss to the Dane at the US Open just a couple of months ago but more importantly both ladies will be desperate to get off to a positive start this week. Maria and Caroline are two of the most in form players heading into Singapore, we can expect a quality match between these two to kick start proceedings in the white group.
Maria’s post Roland Garros results were somewhat disappointing, especially compared to her stunning achievements during the clay court season where she won three title (Roland Garros, Stuttgart and Madrid). However, Maria arrives in Singapore full of confidence after claiming her first Beijing Open title just a fortnight ago. Maria decided to remain in Asia in the lead to the WTA Finals and seems fresh and ready for a real assault at her second tour finals title.
Caroline Wozniacki scrapped into Singapore courtesy of a fantastic North American hard court season where she reached her second Grand Slam final at the US Open. After a couple of years of disappointing results it’s been great to see Caroline back playing at the top of her game. Caroline will bring a lot of confidence into this match having defeated Maria at the US Open just a couple of months ago. Caroline is one of the players who has nothing to lose this week, being in Singapore is a real bonus for Wozniacki, especially considering the dark space she was in midway through the season.
Maria has a 5-3 head-to-head record over Wozniacki, however as mentioned above Caroline was victorious in their only meeting in 2014. Wozniacki proved too solid for an erratic Sharapova, prevailing 6-4 2-6 6-2 in the fourth round of the US Open. Maria was unable to control her aggression, hitting far too many unforced errors in what where typically tricky conditions on Arthur Ashe Stadium. On hard courts, the head-to-head between these two is split at 3-3. It's an interesting rivalry between two ladies with completley contrasting game styles and personalities.
Wozniacki certainly has the game to frustrate Sharapova, however the match will no doubt be on Sharapova racquet. Maria rarely loses to opponents such Caroline twice in a row and will be desperate to kick start her Singapore campaign with a win on Tuesday. The conditions in Singapore should suit Maria, certainly much more than Arthur Ashe Stadium where they last met. I think Maria will prevail in two tight sets.
Prediction: Maria Sharapova to defeat Caroline Wozniacki in 2 sets