Dubai R1: Caroline Garcia vs Anna Schmiedlova
Two of the tours most promising rising stars will collide in an exciting first round match on Monday at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships when Caroline Garcia comes up against Anna Schmiedlova. Both ladies have made relatively disappointing starts to the season and will look at this match as an opportunity to gain a much needed boost in confidence.
Caroline Garcia’s Australian Open campaign started off in promising fashion after amassing a perfect record at the Hopman Cup and a good week in Sydney. However, Garcia’s Australian summer ultimately ended in disappointment when she suffered a first round loss to Barbora Strycova in Melbourne. Garcia still arrives in Dubai in some good form after guiding France to a crucial Fed Cup victory over Italy last weekend. Garcia recorded victories over Camila Giorgi and Sara Errani, both in straight sets. There is an opportunity for Garcia to go on a deep run this week given the vulnerability of the top seeds in the draw.
Anna Schmiedlova had a wonderful season 2015 but has been unable to bring that form into 2016. Schmiedlova has suffered some crushing defeats in 2016, including straight set losses to Varvara Lepchenko, Monica Puig and Daria Kasatkina during the Australian summer. The Slovakian has shown that she is a quality player and will no doubt turn her poor form around at some stage in the near future, this match could be a good opportunity for Schmiedlova to gain a much needed win.
This will be the first career meeting between Garcia and Schmiedlova. These two are pretty evenly matched and have similar capabilities. However, Garcia looks to have the edge heading into this particular match. The Frenchwoman has the better form heading into this match, playing much more consistent tennis. Garcia is likely to hold serve easier than her opponent in this match-up, one of the key differences between the pair who are both very competent from the baseline.