Twelfth seed Elise Mertens of Belgium will face Russia’s Ekaterina Alexandrova in the first round of the Olympics women’s singles on Saturday, July 24. Get the live streaming options of this Elise Mertens v Ekaterina Alexandrova match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Elise Mertens v Ekaterina Alexandrova Head to Head
They are 1-1 from their previous two meetings, with Alexandrova winning in ‘s-Hertogenbosch in 2019 and Mertens getting her revenge in Linz in 2020.
Mertens is in Top Form This Year
When it comes to singles, the grass season took away a bit of her early season momentum, but World No. 17 Elise Mertens will be hoping to return to form on the hard courts of Tokyo.
The 25-year-old heads to her first Olympics with a 24-11 record in 2021. The Belgian has featured in two finals this year, winning the title at the Gippsland Trophy and finishing runner-up in Istanbul.
Among her other accomplishments this year, Mertens was a semifinalist in Dubai, a quarterfinalist in Madrid and made it to the fourth round in Miami, all for the first time in her career. To top it all, Mertens also won her maiden Australian Open and Wimbledon doubles titles.
Having already achieved so many firsts in her career this year, Mertens will be high on confidence, which can propel her to new highs in Tokyo.
Alexandrova is a Tough Competitor
World No. 34 Ekaterina Alexandrova is a tough opponent to beat and Mertens would know that from their previous two encounters.
The Russian tends to do well on hard courts, but the 26-year-old hasn’t quite reached the levels that she achieved last year.
Alexandrova won her maiden WTA title in Shenzhen in 2020 and also made it to two other semifinals.
This year, the Russian has made it to the semifinals just once, reaching the final four stage at the Gippsland Trophy. She’s also featured in four other quarterfinals but hasn’t been able to go through. Overall she heads to Tokyo with a decent 18-14 record and will be a threat in the earlier rounds.
Mertens v Alexandrova Prediction and Tip
This will be one of the most intriguing matches of the first round. Expect this contest to be decided in three.