Daria Gavrilova vs Elise Mertens, Roland Garros R1 Preview

Roland Garros, ??? R1 Preview + Prediction
(24) ?? Daria Gavrilova vs ?? Elise Mertens

Daria Gavrilova had found form at the right time, the Aussie enters Roland Garros on a high after runner-up performance in Strasbourg and a strong showing in Rome the week before. Gavrilova will face a tough test in the opening round as she comes up against an ever-improving Elise Mertens, a battle between two players very comfortable on a clay court.

Gavrilova will arrive in Paris having won 9 of her last 11 matches after a run through qualifying to the quarter-finals in Rome and a runner-up performance in Strasbourg last week. Clay is Gavrilova’s best surface given her outstanding movement, it will be interesting to see if she can bring her best tennis to Roland Garros, something she has been unable to do in the past as she has never gone past the second round in Paris.

Elise Mertens has shown glimpses of her potential throughout the year. Most recently Mertens claimed some impressive wins, including a win over Sara Errani to reach the final on clay in Istanbul. However, Mertens arrives in Paris fresh off some disappointing losses, including a first round loss to Alison Riske last week.

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Daria Gavrilova thrashed Elise Mertens in their only previous meetings, a 6-2 6-1 drubbing in Marrakesh last month. Gavrilova’s superior movement and defensive skills are a formula to frustrate a player like Mertens. The Belgium can also defend well but will look to be the aggressor in this match-up. I suspect a confident Gavrilova will again prove too solid for Mertens here, Gavrilova is playing well right now and should go on to have a good tournament.

Prediction: (24) Daria Gavrilova to defeat Elise Mertens in 3 sets

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