WTA Toronto Rogers Cup Day 3 Predictions Including Naomi Osaka vs Tatjana Maria

Naomi Osaka Rogers Cup

Day three at the Rogers Cup in Toronto looks set to provide a day full of thrilling tennis with no shortage of big names, including Wimbledon champion Simona Halep and 23-time Major champion Serena Williams, set to take to the court in Canada. But who will book their place in the third round at this crucial warm-up event ahead of the US Open later this month?

WTA Toronto Rogers Cup Day Three Predictions

Karolina Pliskova vs Alison Riske

Head-to-head: Pliskova 6-1 Riske

Karolina Pliskova continues to fall short of her considerable potential at the Slams, but she has had an excellent season away from them, highlighted by titles in Rome and Eastbourne. And after Ashleigh Barty’s loss to Sofia Kenin, the Czech could reclaim the world #1 ranking at the end of this week if other results go her way. But she will need a deep run at the Rogers Cup to stand a chance of doing that and faces a tough early test in the shape of Wimbledon quarterfinalist Alison Riske.

The American impressed in coming through the qualifying before edging out Greece’s Maria Sakkari 4-6 6-2 7-6. However, that match will surely have taken a fair amount out of her legs. She has also struggled to contend with Pliskova in the past, losing all but one of their seven meetings. Provided the third seed isn’t rusty, having not been in competitive action since Wimbledon, her powerful serve and forehand should see her past Riske and into the round of 16.

Prediction: Pliskova in 2
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Belinda Bencic vs Julia Goerges

Head-to-head: Goerges 2-1 Bencic

Canada has been a happy hunting ground for Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic, who won the biggest title of her career to date in Toronto four years ago. And she arrives at this year’s Rogers Cup with a real chance of emulating that success. In the first round, she proved far too strong for Anastasia Potapova, dismissing the teenaged Russian for the loss of just three games.

She is, however, likely to encounter more resistance up against the big-hitting Julia Goerges, who beat her in the final in Luxembourg last season in straight-sets. The German did well to see off the challenge of Polona Hercog in the first round and has a game well-suited to the North American hard courts. But Bencic is the form player and it is hard to see Goerges having an answer for her clean ball striking.

Prediction: Bencic in 3
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Katerina Siniakova vs Elina Svitolina

Head-to-head: Svitolina 2-0 Siniakova

If their previous two clashes are anything to go by, the renewal of Elina Svitolina and Katerina Siniakova’s rivalry could well be a thriller. Svitolina arrives in Toronto after an injury-hit season that was revitalised by an unexpected run to the Wimbledon semifinals. That will surely have given her real confidence that she can make an impact on the hard courts of North America, particularly due to the battling nature of her victories in SW19.

Siniakova, meanwhile, bounced back from a disappointing first-round loss to Jessica Pegula in Washington by edging out former-NCAA champion Danielle Collins in three sets. As proven by their past encounters, her unorthodox, attacking game can cause Svitolina real problems, though she would likely be more dangerous on a slicker surface. On a hard court, expect Svitolina’s movement and consistency to eventually prove decisive, though the Ukrainian won’t have it all her own way.

Prediction: Svitolina in 3
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Naomi Osaka vs Tatjana Maria

Head-to-head: Osaka 1-1 Maria

One can only assume that US Open and Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka is delighted to be back on the hard courts after enduring a lean period on the clay and grass in Europe. The Japanese has yet to come to grips with either surface, but on a hard court she remains amongst the world’s best thanks to her formidable power. Germany’s Tatjana Maria cannot come close to matching that power, but she does possess an excellent slice and sharp skills in the forecourt. But if Osaka is focused, that seems unlikely to be enough to see her past the two-time Major champion.

Prediction: Osaka in 2

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