Wimbledon Day 1 Women’s Predictions–Including Venus Williams vs Cori Gauff

Day 1 Venus Williams

Monday is the opening day of The Championships, Wimbledon. What should we look forward to on Day 1? Anything can happen, and we’re here at LWOT to try to predict it for you. For Day 1, we will predict 16 matches. This article contains four of them, and we also have three more sets of predictions for you. (One features Naomi Osaka vs Yulia Putintseva, the second headlines Elina Svitolina vs Daria Gavrilova, and the third features Alize Cornet vs Victoria Azarenka.) Predicting Day 1 matches for you are myself (Yesh Ginsburg), David Adair, and Tracey Essex.

Wimbledon Day 1 Women’s Predictions

Shelby Rogers vs Anett Kontaveit

 

Tracey:
A lot of opening round exits at Wimbledon for American Shelby Rogers. And, an injury withdrawal in Mallorca doesn’t give me a lot of confidence that the Rogers’ game can carry very far. Kontaveit hasn’t had an impressive grass court result, with a first round exit in Birmingham and a second round exit in Eastbourne. Not the Estonian’s best surface, for sure. But, the #20 seed shouldn’t have much cause for concern in this matchup.
Prediction: Kontaveit in 3

David:
If Shelby Rogers is even 80% fit she wins this. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees, but the American Rogers looked back to her best in the Mallorca Open 2nd round against Bencic. She was serving well and tactically out-thinking the base-liner. Then in the final set she withdrew through injury, and thoughts of the knee injury that threw her 2018 season into disarray crept back in to minds of onlookers. Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit has not looked like herself on grass this season and is 1-2 on the surface so far in 2019. The World #20 is a title winner on grass (‘s-Hertogenbosch 2017), but that form is far behind her. She does hold a 2014 hard-court victory over Rogers, but the American has a decent chance in this match, if anywhere near full fitness.
Prediction: Rogers in 3

Yesh:
Kontaveit doesn’t really like the grass, but she’s a much better player than Rogers overall, and on grass on top of that. Most Americans seem to like grass. If the surface suits Rogers, her results haven’t quite shown it. She did reach the third round at Wimbledon last year, but I can’t see her doing that again this year.
Prediction: Kontaveit in 3

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Anna Karolina Schmiedlova vs Monica Puig

Tracey:
It’s hard to figure out exactly what Monica Puig will do from tournament to tournament. The Puerto Rican can bring in a win against some of the tour’s toughest, then lose to a 100+ ranked opponent. Hopefully Kamau Murray is addressing that inconsistency and game planning for a deep Wimbledon run. Schmiedlova is coming onto the grass cold. And, she has a dangerous opponent while trying to find her footing. This is where a focused Puig should make quick work of this match.
Prediction: Puig in 2

David:
Slovak Anna Schmeidlova last played in clay event in Bol and Puig is 0-2 for the season on grass. One of these players will at least gain their first 2019 grass court victory. The Slovak holds 2019 clay win in Madrid qualifying over Puig. However, in their previous two hard-court meetings before that, Puig dropped just four games. There were signs in the 4-6 6-7 defeat to Elise Mertens in Easton last week that Puig’s potent power-redirecting prowess is starting to resurface. She should gain her first grass victory of the season at Wimbledon.
Prediction: Puig in 2

Yesh:
Puig is a long way from her Gold Medal at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio. She still has all the talent in the world, but for some reason can’t put things together consistently. She likes the grass though, and her raw power should move her through, at least to the second round.
Prediction: Puig in 2

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Daria Kasatkina vs Ajla Tomljanovic

Tracey:
Ajla Tomljanovic will make her inroads capitalizing on the shaky serve from Daria Kasatkina. There’s no weapon in the Russian’s serve and Kasatkina throws in more than a few double faults along the way. Yet, Kasatkina is an exceptional problem solver, and when she gets her serve in play, she can use the inside in forehand for clean winners. The Tomljanovic serve will be vulnerable to Russian’s strong return of serve. You can expect a battle but I think Kasatkina can take the points at crucial moments.
Prediction: Kasatkina in 3

David:
Both players come here with little grass match time under their belts. Despite making the Nottingham Open 2019 quarterfinals, Tomljanovic played the bulk of her matches indoors due to the weather. A close defeat to a tricky Andrea Petkovic in three sets in Eastbourne gives hope of a return to form for the promising Russian Kasatkina. On this evidence it is not too much of a leap of faith to expect her progress to continue enough to see off the Australian.
Prediction: Kasatkina in 3

Yesh:
It’s remarkable how well Kasatkina does with how weak her serve is. The Kasatkina serve is quite possibly the biggest weakness on the entire WTA Tour right now. She often makes up for it with the rest of her all-court game, and her return is very strong. Still, you can’t have a liability like that against another good player on the Wimbledon grass.
Prediction: Tomljanovic in 3

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Venus Williams vs Cori Gauff

 

Tracey:
You never know how Venus Williams will serve, and therein lies the challenge. Cori Gauff is undoubtedly America’s star in the making. Unfortunately, she’s a long way off from being able to take out a player of Williams’ caliber. While it may not be pretty, Venus will get through the talented 15-year-old. And on the scoreboard, an ugly wins counts the same as a pretty one.
Prediction: Williams in 2

David:
This is a TV schedulers’ dream of a match-up. There is a 24 year age gap between the pair. Gauff, who is making her main draw debut, was not even a thought when Venus made her’s. When the two step out on court and put their game faces on, none of this will matter a jot. Cori Gauff decided not to play any warm-up tournaments on grass. Although, Gauff’s three qualifying wins on the Wimbledon surface give her a recent match fitness edge. That said, Venus will be please by her run to the Birmingham quarterfinals, losing only to the unbeaten on grass for the season, World #1 Ashleigh Barty. Venus may overawe her young opponent.
Prediction: Williams in 2

Yesh:
Can the youngest qualifier in the Open Era really take out five-time champion Venus Williams? Venus is absolutely ageless, still playing top-level tennis at 39. Gauff might have idolized Williams (and her sister Serena) as a young child, but facing an idol on a show court at Wimbledon is something different than anything Gauff has gone through in life. She’s also still only 15. Assuming Williams is healthy, she’ll take this.
Prediction: Williams in 2

Main Photo:
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Have any thoughts on our Day 1 predictions? Feel free to leave them in the comments.

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