The 37th-ranked Daria Kasatkina of Russia faces American and 65th-ranked Sloane Stephens in the second round of the 2021 Parma Open on Tuesday, May 18. Get the live streaming options of this Daria Kasatkina v Sloane Stephens match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Daria Kasatkina v Sloane Stephens Head to Head
There have been three previous matches played between these two players and Stephens leads 2-1.
Interestingly, both of Stephens’ wins came on clay – at the Charleston Open of 2016 and French Open of 2018 – while Kasatkina defeated her opponent in Indian Wells in 2018.
Kasatkina Adjsuting to Life on Clay
Coming into the clay, Kasatkina was enjoying one of the, if not the, best seasons of her career having won two WTA titles already. She was 15-4 on win-loss and as far as confidence goes, the Russian was at her best.
Unfortunately for Kasatkina, her form on clay hasn’t been remotely close to that on show earlier this season.
In what is her fourth tournament on clay in 2021, Kasatkina has won just three matches so far; the third of which came on Sunday when she registered a straight-set victory over Su-wei Hsieh in the opening round of the Parma Open.
Kasatkina, who had come off a first round loss in Rome last week, defeated Hsieh 6-4, 6-3 in an hour and 27 minutes. Can she now take down a player who has had her own issues but might be showing some resurgence in recent times?
Stephens Gaining Confidence from Recent Results
Much like most of the previous season, Stephens looked to be in a lot of bother this year too when she lost five of the six matches she played in on hard court. Her only win had come in round one at Miami where she managed to get past Oceane Dodin in a stiff three-setter but that win aside, Stephens had won just one set.
Which is why, while her results on clay haven’t been a lot to write about, they have been a drastic improvement from her previous self.
At Charleston, for instance, Stephens won three matches in straight sets before her resurgence was stalled by Veronika Kudermetova. She also made the second round in Madrid and came through the qualifiers in Rome before losing to Madison Keys in the opener there.
Here, Stephens has already gotten past fellow American Caty McNally but now faces an interesting challenge. Kasatkina hasn’t had too much on clay but overall has had better results over the past two years.
That gets tempered by the fact Stephens has defeated Kasatkina twice on clay.
Kasatkina v Stephens Prediction and Tip
While Kasatkina, at 4/6, is a favourite, we are backing Stephens to grab hold of a set at the very least. A Stephens win, at 11/10, seems to be a decent punt too.