Qatar Total Open, ?? Championship Match Preview:
?? Caroline Wozniacki vs (2) ?? Karolina Pliskova
A rain interrupted week in Doha is finally back on track as a blockbuster final between Caroline Wozniacki and Karolina Pliskova is set for Saturday evening at the Qatar Total Open. Wozniacki and Pliskova have clearly been the standout performers this week in Doha, both enter the final in top form which should lead to a classic final.
Caroline Wozniacki has been in super form this week at the Qatar Total Open, Wozniacki has stormed through to the final without dropping a set. Wozniacki completed two matches on Friday, starting with a 7-5 6-1 win over Lauren Davis before earning a late night 6-1 6-2 thrashing of Monica Puig. Wozniacki is clearly back to full fitness and the good results have followed. Wozniacki at her best has always been a very tough opponent for anyone on the WTA tour, that has clearly been the case for Pliskova in the past given their head-to-head record so the Dane will come into this final with a lot of confidence and momentum on her side.
Karolina Pliskova has still only lost one match in 2017. The Czech world number 3 started the year with a title in Brisbane before reaching the quarter-finals at the Australian Open. Pliskova now has a chance to be the first player on tour to win two titles in 2017. Pliskova’s pathway to the final hasn’t been easy, starting with a tricky 7-5 6-4 win over Caroline Garcia before smashing Shuai Zhang 6-2 6-0. Pliskova’s biggest test came at the semi-final stage where she recorded a very impressive 6-4 4-6 6-3 win over Dominika Cibulkova. Pliskova will be tested greatly in Saturday’s final given she has never beaten Wozniacki before.
Interestingly Caroline Wozniacki has won all three of the previous meetings between the pair. However, their most recent match was back in 2014, Pliskova has clearly improved significantly since then and has generally played at a much better level than the Dane in recent times. All three of their previous matches went the distance, and all three were on a hard court. Wozniacki won 6-1 36 6-2 in Istanbul in their most recent match.
This should be a really close match with both ladies playing well this week. I’m going to give the slight edge to Wozniacki. I thought Wozniacki would win the tournament from the outset and i see no big reason to change my mind here. These types of match-ups can be troublesome for Pliskova, she has never beaten Wozniacki and has struggled against similar players such as Radwanska and Kerber. Wozniacki has been so solid this week, making very little errors and importantly she is serving well which will be the key to her remaining in this match. If Wozniacki can continue to serve well and engage in a good number of rallies on the Pliskova serve I think she will be able to tough out a win here.