??? Porsche Tennis GP, Stuttgart R1 Preview
?? (5) Angelique Kerber vs. ?? Donna Vekic
Angelique Kerber begins her Stuttgart campaign with an opening round clash against Croatia’s Donna Vekic. Kerber is a two-time former champion in Stuttgart having won back-to-back titles in 2015 and 2016. The German will be keen to add a third Stuttgart title to her collection to belatedly open her title count for 2019. Donna Vekic will have other ideas and is always a danger on her day, can Vekic cause a big upset?
Kerber has made a very solid start to 2019 and will now be focused on improved results during the clay court swing, a time of the year that the German usually struggles. Kerber arrives in Stuttgart on the back of a semi-final showing in Monterrey, a few weeks prior to that Kerber reached the final in Indian Wells, so her form is good. The quick clay court conditions in Stuttgart have traditionally suited Kerber nicely and she will be keen to once again impress in front of the vocal home crowd.
Donna Vekic’s recent from has not been very impressive at all. The Croatian will be hoping for a form reversal in Stuttgart, a win over Angelique Kerber would be the perfect way to kick-start a form reversal. Vekic has only won a single match in the last few months having lost in the opening round at Indian Wells and the second round in Miami. The quick clay court conditions in Stuttgart should also help Vekic on a surface she usually struggles on.
Kerber has won both of the previous meetings between the pair, both in straight sets, 6-4 7-6 at the Rogers Cup in 2017 and 6-4 6-1 at the Australian Open last year. This will be their first meeting on a clay court.