WTA Toronto Rogers Cup Day 2 Predictions Including Sloane Stephens vs Marie Bouzkova

Donna Vekic Rogers Cup

As ever, the field for the Rogers Cup is stacked with talent as the best players in the women’s game seek the title. With the US Open less than a month away, the Premier 5 event provides the perfect opportunity to gather some momentum before the final Major of the year. A number of the game’s biggest stars including home hope Eugenie Bouchard and former-world #1 Victoria Azarenka are in action. But who will advance on day two/

Toronto Rogers Cup Day Two Predictions

Sloane Stephens vs Marie Bouzkova

Head-to-head: first meeting

It has been a rather hit-and-miss season for Sloane Stephens. The American has delivered some fine performances, but has struggled to find the consistency required to consistently put together deep runs at the biggest tournaments. And her hard-court campaign did not get off to a promising start in Washington, where, despite being the top seed, she lost in straight-sets in the first round to Rebecca Peterson of Sweden.

Bouzkova also lost early last week, at the Silicon Valley Classic, but impressed in coming through the qualifying in Toronto without dropping a set before demolishing 16-year-old wildcard Leylah Annie Fernandez 6-0 6-1 in the first round. As a result, she will surely be full of confidence. Stephens will, of course, mark a serious step up in quality for the Czech and if she can find her best tennis will surely prove too strong. But she has not found her best tennis often this year. Expect Bouzkova to take advantage.

Prediction: Bouzkova in 3
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Venus Williams vs Carla Suarez Navarro

Head-to-head: Williams 7-3 Suarez Navarro

The veteran Venus Williams has at times this year looked like a player coming swiftly towards the end of her career. But at others she has shown why she is an eight-time Major champion and former world #1. Her booming serve and powerful groundstrokes still ensure that she can never be discounted and she may approach this contest with Carla Suarez Navarro with confidence. She has, after all, won seven of their ten contests, including earlier this season at the Miami Open. On the medium-pace courts at the Rogers Cup, the power of Williams should prove decisive once again, though the Spaniard has the quality to make a match of it.

Predictions: Williams in 2
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Maria Sakkari vs Alison Riske

Head-to-head: first meeting

In what is perhaps surprisingly their first match, Maria Sakkari and Alison Riske are set to meet for a place in the second round. The American Riske had an excellent grass-court season, highlighted by a run to the Wimbledon quarterfinals and will surely be hoping to press on in Toronto after coming through the qualifying, where she beat Carol Zhao and her compatriot Varvara Lepchenko. But she will likely be in for a stern test against Sakkari.

The Greek arrives in Toronto fresh from reaching the semifinals at the Silicon Valley Classic. Her hard-hitting game is typically rewarded on the hard courts of North America. Riske cannot match her opponent for power and will likely look to rely on her court-craft and guile to outmanoeuvre Sakkari. Her linear shots will be vital if she is to do so. But if Sakkari can summon the sort of form she displayed in California last week, it is hard to see a path to victory for Riske.

Prediction: Sakkari in 3
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Aryna Sabalenka vs Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova

Head-to-head: first meeting

Aryna Sabalenka had been enduring a miserable 2019 after a breakthrough 2018 season, but she showed some signs of life at the Silicon Valley Classic where she reached the final. With a significant number of points to defend in the coming weeks, that run in California will surely have been most welcome despite her loss in the final. Her powerful game is well-suited to the conditions in North America and a deep run at the Rogers Cup should not be ruled out. If she can keep unforced errors to a minimum, she should have more than enough power to out-muscle Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.

Prediction: Sabalenka in 3
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Madison Keys vs Donna Vekic

Head-to-head: Keys 2-0 Vekic

Madison Keys is another player who has endured a rather indifferent season that she will be looking to turn around in Toronto. But she will need to be at her very best up against the in-form Donna Vekic, last week a semifinalist at the Silicon Valley Classic. In Keys’ favour is that she has won both their previous encounters, though neither were contested on a hard court, and that Vekic was overpowered in California by Sabalenka. Keys, who does not want for power, is capable of delivering a similarly destructive performance. But Vekic is the more consistent and that should see her over the line in this one.

Prediction: Vekic in 3

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