More French Open Day 1 Women’s Predictions–Including Sloane Stephens vs Misaki Doi

Sloane Stephens

The French Open begins on Sunday, which means the first round is split up over three days. We might not get 32 singles matches on Day 1 (we still get that at Wimbledon, though), but there will be plenty of tennis to kick off the action. We at LWOT are here to predict as many of the matches as we can for you. Not only are we predicting the matches in this article including Sloane Stephens vs Misaki Doi, but we also have two more sets of predictions coming! (One set features Venus Williams vs Elina Svitolina, and the other headlines Garbine Muguruza vs Taylor Townsend.) Predicting this set of matches today are myself (Yesh Ginsburg), Eric Han, Tracey Essex and Jim Smith.

French Open Day 1 Women’s Predictions Including Sloane Stephens vs Misaki Doi

Belinda Bencic vs Jessika Ponchet

Eric:
Ponchet is a talented young Frenchwoman who was awarded a wild card to play in the tournament. Bencic will prove to be too much for Ponchet, who will no doubt use this as a learning experience to hopefully play more Grand Slams in the future.
Prediction: Bencic in 2

Tracey:
Jessika Ponchet was dealt a tough draw. Few players would relish an opening round facing Belinda Bencic – easily one of the hottest players on tour. While the young Frenchwoman is not without talent, an opening round opponent in the form of Bencic eliminates any chance of seeing Round 2.
Prediction: Bencic in 2

Yesh:
Belinda Bencic has really turned things around this year after a few rough ones. First she dealt with injuries, then she just couldn’t find her form. That time is past her, though. Talented young Frenchwoman Jessika Ponchet could have put up a challenge with a better draw, but she can’t touch an in-form Bencic.
Prediction: Bencic in two.

Jim:

Earlier this season, Bencic seemed like an unstoppable force and whilst her form has cooled off a little since, she still surely has to be accounted a title threat in Paris. She seems certain to have too much for Ponchet, who though talented, lacks experience.
Prediction: Bencic in 2

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Jennifer Brady vs Ivana Jorovic

Eric:
Brady is the slight favorite coming in, but a potential upset is in the cards here. Both players are ranked similarly, but Jorovic will play with nothing to lose as Brady is trying to defend points from last year.
Prediction: Jorovic in 2

Tracey:
Ivana Jorovic has seen moderate success at the ITF level. The 22-year-old Serbian got a tough opening round facing the hard-hitting American Jennifer Brady. This is a hard match to predict as Brady can have some amazing results only to lose to a much less challenging opponent. I give Jorovic a chance, but a slim one at that.
Prediction: Brady in 2

Yesh:
I actually really like Jorovic in this match. She’s making a good transition on to the main WTA Tour, and she is fighting and winning matches against solid players. Brady has far more experience, but the clay should really suit Jorovic better. Don’t be surprised to see the Serbian pull this out.
Prediction: Jorovic in 2

Jim:

Jorovic undeniably has talent and seems to play her best tennis on the clay, but she’s not been in good form of late, winning only a handful of matches in recent weeks. But Brady hasn’t exactly been pulling up trees lately either. This one seems likely to be tight then, if not the most high quality match of the day. Ultimately, Brady’s greater experience could just prove decisive though.
Prediction: Brady in 3

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Svetlana Kuznetsova vs Kristina Kucova

Eric:
Kucova came through by qualifying, so will have already had some match play in Paris. This can sometimes be an advantage as we have seen so many times in Grand Slams. However, Kuznetsova has won this tournament before so will know her way around the Paris clay courts and should win this match.
Prediction: Kuznetsova in 2

Tracey:
This will be an outstanding learning opportunity for Kristina Kucova. Svetlana Kuznetsova will give a one hour master class entitled “How to Win Round 1.” This will be one way traffic in favor of the resurgent Russian.
Prediction: Kuznetsova in 2

Yesh:
For a long while, it looked like Kuznetsova might be in the twilight of her career. She has put those rumblings to bed the past few years as she finds something of her old form again. She may no longer be a favorite to win Majors, but she can definitely challenge just about anyone, and should always be capable of a deep run. Kucova won’t stop her, at all.
Prediction: Kuznetsova in 2

Jim:
Kucova will be match tough after her run through the qualifying, often a big advantage in the early rounds. But will it be enough to see her past former-champion Kuznetsova? It doesn’t seem likely. The Russian’s powers may be on the wane but she’s still a formidable opponent. Expect her too prove too strong for the Slovakian.
Prediction: Kuznetsova in 2

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Sloane Stephens vs Misaki Doi

Eric:
Sloane Stephens should come through to win this match with relative ease and get her Roland Garros campaign started on a positive note. It will be surprising if Stephens gets upset at the first hurdle, as she has had a decent clay court season.
Prediction: Sloane Stephens in 2

Tracey:
Will the sluggish, unfocused and inconsistent Sloane Stephens arrives in Paris? That would be Japan’s Misaki Doi’s only way to win this match. The skill sets aren’t even close. It should be an easy straight sets win for Stephens – assuming the in-form version takes the court.
Prediction: Sloane Stephens in 2

Yesh:
Sloane Stephens is the much better player, though Doi is no slouch on her best day. The American is also capable of just mailing it in sometimes, like in last year’s Australian Open first round. Still, it would be foolish to pick against her no matter what her form coming into the tournament is. Since her form is decent now anyway, this won’t be close.
Prediction: Stephens in 2

Jim:
Sloane Stephens might not be the most natural clay-courter in the game, but she is an excellent mover and can grind down most opponents. Doi doesn’t lack quality and has scored some big wins in the past. But Stephens is a Grand Slam champion and a former-finalist in Paris for a reason. It’s hard to see her having too many problems with Doi.
Prediction: Stephens in 2

Main Photo:
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Don’t agree with our Day 1 predictions? Have any other thoughts on the upcoming Day 1 matches? Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.

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