???? Roland Garros, R1 Prediction
?? (9) Elina Svitolina vs. ?? Venus Williams
One of the most intriguing opening round matches at Roland Garros sees Elina Svitolina take on the legend that is Venus Williams. Most of the key factors seemingly favour Svitolina heading into this match. Clay is Svitolina’s best surface whilst clay has always been considered the American’s least preferred surface. Svitolina is in the prime of her career whilst Williams is in overtime.
I suspect Svitolina will be too solid for Williams on the red dirt. Whilst Svitolina has had poor results of late, I think this is a blessing in disguise, Svitolina is fresh and ready to fire in Paris whilst in previous years she has perhaps been a little jaded after winning the title in Rome prior to arriving in Paris.
Svitolina’s defensive capabilities mixed with her solid ground strokes on both sides should be too much for Venus to handle on this surface. Venus can’t outlast Svitolina in a physical battle and I highly doubt she can consistently blast her way through the Ukrainian. Indeed, this is the type of match-up Venus has really struggled in during the later stages of her career. This is a match Svitolina simply can’t afford to lose and she won’t.