26th-ranked Karolina Muchova will take on USA’s Ann Li in the first round of the Western & Southern Open 2020 on Saturday, August 22. This match is expected to start at 2.30 pm local time (or 7.30 pm BST). Get the live streaming options of this Karolina Muchova v Ann Li match along with its preview, head to head and tips here.
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Karolina Muchova v Ann Li Head to Head
This will be the first match between Muchova and the 133rd-ranked Li.
Not the Best of WTA Season for Muchova
Before the coronvirus ensured the suspension of the WTA tour, Muchova had played in four tournaments and barely did anything of note in any.
There were first round defeats in Brisbane and Dubai, while she managed to win a match at the Australian Open and made it to the second round at the Qatar Open as well.
This comes as a bit of surprise for a player who finished the previous season on a win-loss ratio of 23-8 on hard court surfaces – where all these tournaments were played earlier in the year. This includes a tournament win at Seoul in the latter half of 2019, her first-ever title.
Which is why the break from tennis might not have been a very bad idea for Muchova who would have had some time off to think about the differences between the two seasons, this and the last. Muchova did feature in a few exhibition tournaments, all but one of them were on clay. So while she shouldn’t be rusty, there could be stark differences.
Ann Li Looking to Break into Top 100
It was as recently as in 2017 that Ann Li started out on her professional tennis career and was ranked as low as 919th in the world. Improving every year, she finished 588th that season, 295th in 2018 and 149th last season before coming into this tournament as a 133rd-ranked player.
And this has been possible because of her showing at WTA competitions in which she has done well to make it to the main draw. It started at the Auckland Open, the first tournament of the season and Li won three matches to qualify for the first round.
She repeated the same at the Australian Open and this time went one better to make it to the second round.
And now here, in Cincinnati, she has beaten Zarina Diyas and Viktoria Kuzmova in the qualifiers to make it to another main draw.
Karolina Muchova v Ann Li Prediction & Tip
The overwhelmingly favourite odds of 3/10 for Muchova isn’t too much of a surprise but that doesn’t mean Ann Li doesn’t have a chance. A fighting encounter can be expected and one where we can see three sets in the offing.
Tip: Three sets in the match (7/4 with bet365)