After they both prevailed in their first-round ties, 99th-ranked Marta Kostyuk and Su-wei Hsieh, the current world No. 1 in doubles, will clash in the second round of the 2021 WTA Abu Dhabi Open. The match is currently scheduled for Friday, January 8, with an exact time yet to be announced. Get the live streaming options of this Marta Kostyuk v Su-wei Hsieh match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Marta Kostyuk v Su-wei Hsieh Head to Head
The two have never faced each other in a competitive match before. This will be the first-ever encounter between them.
Kostyuk Makes Short Work Of Hradecká
Kostyuk’s steady 2020 progress showed in her season opener this year. Facing the challenge of an experienced but aging Lucie Hradecká, she kept her composure and made short work of the two-time Grand Slam doubles winner.
She started strong, breaking Hradecká in the second game of the first set to take a 2-0 lead. Hradecká broke back, but Kostyuk broke her again immediately to go 3-1 up.
The set continued with serve, with both rescuing break points. However, Kostyuk capitalized on a break point in the set’s final game to win it 6-2.
The second set was more of an even affair. Hradecká broke early to go 2-1 up. Again, Kostyuk broke back immediately. The set continued with serve, with both rescuing break points again, before Kostyuk ultimately broke Hradecká to claim the match 6-2, 6-4.
The 18-year-old now marches into the second round, and at 1/2 is the bookies’ favorite against Hsieh.
Hsieh Claws Her Way Back Against Vondroušová
After a torrid year in singles last year, Hsieh managed to start the year off with a great result. Not only had she come into the match as the underdog, but Markéta Vondroušová’s dominance in the first set meant that she had to dig deep to win the tie.
As mentioned, Vondroušová started strong by breaking Hsieh twice in the first three games to go 3-0 up. Hsieh fought back with two break points of her own to go 3-3. Vondroušová took control of the set from that point by winning the next three games, including capitalizing on two break points, to claim the first set 6-3.
Hsieh fought back in the second set. She maximized on all the three break points that she got and rescued three break points to claim the second set 6-3.
In a tough third set, she fought back after being 4-2 and 5-3 down to force a tie-break, which she then won to grant her progress into the second round.
That win was only Hsieh’s second win in her last five matches.
Kostyuk v Hsieh Prediction and Tip
Despite her timid age, Kostyuk is the favorite in this tie, and rightfully so. Again, she’s coming up against a doubles specialist, which could play to her favor having already dispatched Hradecká. However, I expect Hsieh to offer a tougher challenge and possibly force a third set in the match.
In either scenario, the Ukrainian youngster seems destined to come out on top.
Tip: Kostyuk to win: 1/2 (bet365)