Angelique Kerber vs Kristyna Pliskova, Eastbourne R2 Preview

Aegon International, ?? Eastbourne R2 Preview
(1) ?? Angelique Kerber vs ?? Kristyna Pliskova

Angelique Kerber will finally begin her grass court campaign on Tuesday with a potentially tricky second round clash against big serving Czech, Kristyna Pliskova. Kerber was forced to postpone the start to her grass court season by a few weeks due to a hamstring injury. The world number 1 will look to start to build some much needed momentum in Eastbourne before Wimbledon where the German is the defending finalist. Kristyna Pliskova is playing well at the moment and will make life hard for Kerber.

Angelique Kerber had a terribly disappointing clay court season, something that has been common for Kerber given how uncomfortable she is on the surface. Kerber will look to rebound strongly on grass which is arguably her best surface. Kerber was able to do just that in 2016 as she recovered from a first round loss in Paris to reach the Wimbledon final, something that will give Kerber belief. It is however important that Kerber gets a few wins in Eastbourne before heading to Wimbledon.

Kristyna Pliskova should be most effective on a grass court. The less accomplished Pliskova twin’s biggest weapon is clearly her serve, a grass court is where it is most effective. Pliskova made the quarter-finals in Mallorca last week on grass and is building some momentum on the surface. Pliskova got off to a solid start in Eastbourne, beating Naomi Broady 6-2 6-7 6-1. Pliskova saved all 10 break points that she face and also rebound nicely from losing a close second set.

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The only previous match between Kerber and Pliskova was earlier this year at the Australian Open, Kerber won pretty comfortably 6-0 6-4. However, there is potential for Pliskova to do well in this match-up especially on this surface.

I’m going to give Kerber the benefit of the doubt here but this is probably going to be a tough opener for Kerber. Pliskova’s serve is going well enough to ensure that this will be a tight match, Pliskova will probably sneak a set but when things get tight, Kerber’s all-round game should be too much for Pliskova, even on a grass court.

Prediction: Angelique Kerber to defeat Kristyna Pliskova in 3 sets

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