Belarusian No. 1 Aryna Sabalenka will face the rising Russian star Ekaterina Alexandrova, in the quarterfinal of the 2019 WTA St. Petersburg Ladies Trophy on Friday. The match begins at 1.30 pm BST.
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Alexandrova’s Best Run of the Season
The 24-year-old qualifier had a rocky start to the year but she has managed to turn that around in St. Petersburg. She qualified for the main draw and for the first time this season, she has made it past the second round.
In the opening match, Alexandrova met the lucky loser Katie Boulter whom she defeated in three sets. She then met Tereza Martincova – another qualifier, in the second round. On the back of a 7-5, 6-2 victory over her Czech opponent, the Russian reached the quarterfinal.
As for her performance in the previous events, she lost in the opening rounds at the Australian Open, WTA Sydney and Shenzhen. However, she did enjoy a pretty decent spell towards the end of the last season. She was the runner-up in the WTA Linz and capped the season by winning the WTA 125K Series title in Limoges, France. In fact, Alexandrova made it to the top 10 owing to that run.
Sabalenka Starts Off Well
The Belarusian was given a bye into the second round. She started her campaign in the tournament against the Belgian Alison Van Uytvanck. It was an easy win for the fourth-seed, who edged past Van Uytvanck 6-1, 6-4.
The World No. 10 will be eager to make an impression here. Having reached her career-high singles ranking only recently, she will be eager to move up further. Sabalenka started her season on an excellent note by winning the singles title in Shenzhen.
However, when she travelled to Sydney and Melbourne, she couldn’t make it beyond the initial rounds. The 20-year-old has already turned a lot of heads around on the tour, courtesy of her brilliant form in the previous season. She won the Wuhan Open and the Connecticut Open and was also a runner-up in Lugano and Eastbourne.
Aryna Sabalenka v Ekaterina Alexandrova Head to Head
The two players have met only twice so far. The head to head tally is currently tied at 1-1 and interestingly enough, both of those matches took place in Shenzhen. In fact, they met as recently as this year and that time around, Sabalenka won in straight sets.
Sabalenka v Alexandrova – Prediction & Tips
Sabalenka will start this match as the favourite to win. However, it is likely that it will be a close encounter and can very well go to three sets. Sabalenka to win though and for that bet365 are offering 3/10.
You can watch & bet on Aryna Sabalenka v Ekaterina Alexandrova here on Friday, February 1. The match will start at 1:00 pm local time (11:00 am BST).