Qatar Total Open, Doha R1 Preview
?? Carla Suarez Navarro vs ?? (Q) Kateryna Bondarenko
Carla Suarez Navarro will make her first appearance in Doha since her stunning 2016 triumph at the event. Suarez Navarro claimed the biggest title of her career when she won the Qatar Total Open in 2016, the Spaniard could not defend her title due to injury last year so she will be happy to return to the event in 2018. Carla will begin her 2018 Doha campaign on Tuesday against Ukrainian qualifier Kateryna Bondarenko.
Carla Suarez Navarro showed at Melbourne Park last month that she is still a very dangerous player. Carla brushed aside a poor start to the season to reach the quarter-final stage at the Australian Open, a confidence boosting result for the 29-year-old. Suarez Navarro was involved in Spain’s losing Fed Cup tie against Italy over the weekend, unfortunately for Carla she was beaten by Sara Errani in 3 sets in the crucial 3rd rubber.
Kateryna Bondarenko has made a decent start to the season. Bondarenko won a couple of good matches to reach the third round at the Australian Open, one of Bondarenko’s better results at a Grand Slam in recent years. Bondarenko came through the qualifying draw in Doha, beating Karatantcheva in 3 sets and Sorribes Tormo in straight sets to book her spot in the main draw.
Bondarenko holds a 2-1 head-to-head record over Suarez Navarro. However it was the Spaniard who won their most recent match, a 7-6 6-2 win in Tokyo in 2015.