Dominika Cibulkova vs Eugenie Bouchard, Sydney R2 Preview

Apia International, Sydney R2 Preview
(3) ?? Dominika Cibulkova vs (wc) ?? Eugenie Bouchard

Dominika Cibulkova and Eugenie Bouchard will go head-to-head for a fifth time on Tuesday when they meet at the second round stage at the Apia International in Sydney. Eugenie Bouchard currently holds a 3-1 record over Cibulkova but the pair have had contrasting results of last with Cibulkova clearly entering the Australian summer with greater form and a higher level of confidence and reliability in her game.

Dominika Cibulkova made a commanding start to her 2017 Apia International campaign on Monday, claiming a thumping 6-2 6-0 win over Laura Siegemund. Cibulkova ended 2016 on the greatest high of her career, winning the WTA Finals in Singapore and thus reaching the top 5 in the rankings for the first time. It will be interesting to see how long Cibulkova can maintain her spot in the top 5 and whether she can contend for the biggest titles in 2017. Cibulkova is a former finalist in Sydney and the quick conditions seem to suit her game.

Eugenie Bouchard continues to struggle to find the tennis that saw her rocket up the rankings in 2014. The Canadian made a lacklustre start to the season in Brisbane last week, suffering a three set loss to Shelby Rogers. The Canadian stated after the match that she wasn’t quite ready to compete and somewhat expected to lose. Bouchard produced a more convincing performance in her opening round match in Sydney, claiming a 7-6 6-1 win over Shuai Zhang.

Bouchard will enter her second round match with Cibulkova with confidence given her 3-1 record over the Slovakian. Bouchard has won all three matches between the pair on a hard court, including a 6-2 6-0 win at the Rogers Cup last year in what was their most recent clash.

I expect Cibulkova to be too strong for Bouchard on this occasion. Cibulkova will not be proud of her record against Bouchard and will enter this match with a point to prove. Bouchard’s mindset and level of tennis is still quite unknown at the moment. I doubt Bouchard will be able to raise her level to a place high enough to beat a determined Cibulkova on this occasion.

Prediction: Dominika Cibulkova to defeat Eugenie Bouchard in 2 sets

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