After they both edged thrilling quarter-finals, 99th-ranked Ukrainian Marta Kostyuk and Russian Veronika Kudermetova, ranked 46th in the WTA rankings, will clash in the semi-finals of the 2021 WTA Abu Dhabi Open. The match is scheduled for Tuesday, January 12, and is likely to begin at around 1:30 pm local time (4:30 am Eastern Time). Get the live streaming options of this Marta Kostyuk v Veronika Kudermetova match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Marta Kostyuk v Veronika Kudermetova Head to Head
The two have never faced each other in a competitive match before. This will be the first-ever encounter between the 18-year-old Ukrainian and the 23-year-old Russian.
Kostyuk Recovers From Bagel
To say that 18-year-old Kostyuk has been a breath of fresh air in this tournament would be an understatement. The youngster has defied countless odds, predictions, and favorites to make it to her first 500-level semi-final.
Chief among those was her quarter-final match against Sara Sorribes Tormo. Though she’d come into the match as the bookies’ favorite, a slow start saw her lose the first seven games of the match, including getting bageled in the first set.
The tie may have seemed to be tilting in the Spaniard’s direction at that point, but Kostyuk dug deep. After being broken in the first game of the second set, she fought back and won the next six games, which forced the match to go to a deciding set.
Unlike the other two sets, the third one was an evenly matched affair. There were seven converted break points, four of which went Kostyuk’s way to help her edge the set 6-4.
The 18-year-old now enters her first-ever WTA semi-final with her head held high. Having already dispatched Lucie Hradecka, Su-Wei Hsieh, Tamara Zidansek, and now Sorribes Tormo; Kostyuk seems destined to deliver something special in Abu Dhabi
Kudermetova Stuns Second Seed
Kudermetova entered her quarterfinal against Svitolina as the underdog but matched the Ukrainian from the onset.
Despite her five aces and 19/22 first serve points, she lost the first set 7-5 after failing to capitalize on her sole break point and Svitolina crucially converting one of the three break points that she got.
She, however, carried that fight into the second set. She may have only been able to capitalize on 2/5 of the break points that she got, but that was enough to give her the set 6-3 and force a third one.
They both went toe to toe in the third set that somehow managed to up the ante. There were a total of 12 break points, with each player managing to capitalize on two, forcing an ultimate tiebreaker. Kudermetova held her nerve and won the deciding round 7-3.
Having defeated one Ukrainian already, another one stands between Kudermetova and her first-ever singles WTA final.
Kostyuk v Kudermetova Prediction and Tip
On paper, Kudermetova’s aggressive playing style and strong serve should be enough to overpower the rising Ukrainian youngster. However, Kostyuk’s great performances in this tournament should not be overlooked.
Therefore, just like their previous quarterfinal ties, anticipate a close encounter that will either have a high number of games or need a deciding third set.
Tip: Over 21.5 total games: 5/6 (bet365)