A meeting of two unseeded players will see American Bernarda Pera face Russian veteran Svetlana Kuznetsova in the first round of the 2020 Italian Open on Tuesday, September 15. The match will be scheduled soon. Get the live streaming options of this Bernarda Pera v Svetlana Kuznetsova match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Bernarda Pera v Svetlana Kuznetsova Head to Head
This will be a first-ever meeting between these two players.
Pera Gets Automatic Entry After Cut-Off List Increases
Bernarda Pera was expected to be the no.1 seed in the qualifying section of the Italian Open, but that has since changed after the cut-off entry list increased following a number of withdrawals over the weekend. The 25-year-old has now been thrown straight into the main draw in Rome for the very first time.
Pera, a Croatian-born American, did her best work on clay last season where she made semifinals in Prague, Lausanne and Jurmala, while she also won a clay-court ITF 100K title in Trnava. Overall, her campaign in 2019 shows an impressive 21 wins on clay posted, and attained a year-end ranking of world no.65.
The left-hander has found limited main draw opportunities due to her ranking. But now that the burden of qualifying is off her shoulders, she has an opportunity to impress from the get go after gaining automatic entry.
Pera made the second round at the Cincinnati Open and US Open following the tour’s restart and in her first tournament in Lexington she came mighty close to score the best win of her career when she fell in three sets to Serena Williams.
Kuznetsova Opted Against Travelling to New York
Svetlana Kuznetsova, a former US Open champion, was among several high-profile players who withdrew from the 2020 US Open due to Covid-19 related risks. Instead, the 35-year-old elected to prepare for the makeshift clay-court swing.
Kuznetsova did not play in any exhibition tournament during lockdown, focusing on her fitness and getting proper rest for the truncated second half of the season.
She played in her first match since reaching the semifinal in Doha at the WTA Istanbul championships last week, losing in a near three-hour battle to qualifier Eugenie Bouchard in the first round.
The 2009 French Open champion is still motivated to keep her tennis career ticking in the right direction despite having very little time on her side. A wrist injury saw her miss the first three months of the 2019 season, and she struggled for form on her return in April.
Kuznetsova slipped as low as world no.198 in August, before out of nowhere she launched a run to the Cincinnati Masters final. She has since returned into the world’s top-50 (currently sits at no.34), and she will make her 16th main draw appearance at Foro Italico.
Pera v Kuznetsova Prediction & Tip
Pera possesses a lefty game that resembles that of Kvitova. While the American does not generate as much power as the Czech, she still hits as flat as a pancake. Kuznetsova still edges this out on clay, but expect the wily 25-year-old to make this a very difficult opener for the veteran Russian.
Tip: Kuznetsova to win in three sets: 3/1 (bet365)