Beijing R1: Alize Cornet vs (Q) Bethanie Mattek-Sands
An intriguing first round encounter at the China Open on Sunday evening sees a desperate Alize Cornet come up against American qualifier Bethanie Mattek-Sands. Alize Cornet enters her first round match in Beijing having lost 4 of her last 5 matches, a disappointing end to a disappointing season for the Frenchwoman. Alize has one last chance to make a major impact in 2015, she will fancy her chances against Mattek-Sands, an opponent she should match up well against.
Alize Cornet has been out of sorts of late, the Frenchwoman hasn’t seemed like herself on court and is struggling to find the form that saw her have her best season in 2014. Alize suffered a shock first round loss to Kurumi Nara at the U.S Open and was unable to make a winning start to her Asian campaign, suffering a first round loss to Julia Goerges in Wuhan last week. Alize has had a week off to prepare for Beijing, she will be desperate to have a good week in Beijing to end the season on a high.
Bethanie Mattek-Sands is starting to find some reasonable form, the American reached the third round at the U.S Open where she pushed Serena Williams to a third set. Bethanie has started her Asian campaign off well, coming through the qualifying draw in Beijing with victories over Patricia Maria Tig and Lucie Hradecka. Bethanie has been relatively healthy for a good stretch of time now, probably the reason her results are starting to really improve as she has found continuity in her game.
The head-to-head record between the two is split at 1 win apiece, however it is somewhat irrelevant since the two haven’t played each other since 2010. Alize and Bethanie enter this match in contrasting form, Alize has really struggled lately whilst Bethanie is gaining momentum. This looks like a really even match-up, it should a close match between two very inelegant players. This is a match Alize Cornet simply must win, another first round loss to qualifier would be quite disastrous for her, Alize has spent a good amount of time preparing In Beijing and should be fresh and ready to claim a much needed victory.