Australian Open runner-up Petra Kvitova will take on previous champion at the same major, Victoria Azarenka in their second round match at the 2019 St. Petersburg Open on Wednesday.
Watch & bet on Petra Kvitova v Victoria Azarenka with bet365 here* on Wednesday, January 30. The Kvitova v Azarenka match will be played at 3.30 pm local time (12.30 pm BST).
*Geo-restrictions apply & pre-funded account needed
In-form Kvitova to Continue Good Results?
It would have been easy for Kvitova to take a break after making it to the final in an emotion-filled Australian Open campaign but she has decided to continue playing here. Her performance at the Australian Open, despite not winning the title in the end, was exemplary as she dropped no sets in getting to the final before Naomi Osaka needed a tie-breaker and three sets to get past her.
Now, she has a first round bye at the St. Petersburg Open but the big question is if this break of three days between the Australian Open and this competition was enough for her to recuperate physically and mentally from the variety of factors that she would have endured at the year’s first major.
Azarenka Wastes No Time
It was a tearful end of Azarenka’s Australian Open campaign as she lost her opener to Laura Siegemund in straight sets but the Belarusian didn’t let that affect her in her first round match here. Playing Russia’s Margarita Gasparyan, she ran off to a 6-4, 6-1 win over her to book her place in round two of this competition.
For a player who hasn’t reached the last-eight stage at Grand Slams since the 2016 Australian Open, she would hope to get back into her groove soon enough and the best place to start would be here, against an opponent who might not be at her best and in a low-pressure tournament.
Petra Kvitova v Victoria Azarenka Head to Head
It is a neck-in-neck tussle between Kvitova and Azarenka, with the Czech just marginally ahead at 4-3. However, it must be noted that things have changed drastically since their last meeting that happened in 2015.
Azarenka has dropped badly in her rankings because of her time away from the game and subsequent loss of form, while Kvitova has returned from the assault she suffered at home and risen to the second position in the world.
Interesting to also note that these two players had played just once before in a tournament lower than a Mandatory Premier, and that was all those years back in 2008 at Prague. Since then their matches have come at the Australian Open, Wimbledon (twice), Madrid Open, Canadian Open and the WTA Finals.
Kvitova v Azarenka Tips & Predictions
Kvitova is a favourite here with (bet365) offering 4/6 for her win but don’t count out Azarenka and her fighting qualities. I think as a result of that this could go down to three sets in a hard-fought encounter.
Three sets in the match: 11/8 (bet365)
You can watch & bet on Petra Kvitova v Victoria Azarenka here on Wednesday, January 30.