2020 WTA Predictions: Title Winners & Year-End Rankings

WTA 2020 Predictions Australian Open

Following my popular article last year, I will once again be giving my WTA predictions for the upcoming 2020 season. I shall be giving my predictions on the biggest tournaments of the year (Grand Slams, WTA Finals and Summer Olympics) as well as the year-end rankings. So without further a do, here are my predictions…

 Australian Open  

2019 Final: (4) Naomi Osaka d. (8) Petra Kvitová 7–6(7–2), 5–7, 6–4
Thoughts on the 2019 finalists…

Naomi Osaka does not currently possess the mental strength to handle the pressure of being defending champion. When she attempted to defend her Indian Wells and US Open titles this year she lost in the 4th Round on both occasions. I predict the same will happen in Melbourne. Petra Kvitová can no longer beat the top players when they are in good form. That A+ game she once had is no longer within her capacity. Therefore, I don’t see any Grand Slams for her in 2020.

My Predicted Champion: Bianca Andreescu

Andreescu in my eyes is Naomi Osaka 2.0, similar but new and improved. Both won Indian Wells and the US Open in their breakthrough seasons and I expect Andreescu to continue to follow in Osaka’s footsteps by backing up her US Open title with an Australian Open title straight afterwards.

  French Open  

2019 Final: (8) Ashleigh Barty d. Markéta Vondroušová 6−1, 6−3
Thoughts on the 2019 finalists…

The French Open is the hardest Grand Slam for a woman to successfully defend – no woman has done it since 2007. Ashleigh Barty is a weaker player than most of the French Open champions in this time period. If they were unable to defend the title, it seems unlikely that she will. Markéta Vondroušová produced one of the worst maiden Grand Slam final performances we have ever witnessed in this year’s final. I think that match has potentially ruined any chance of her ever reaching another Grand Slam final. 

My Predicted Champion: Simona Halep

Halep’s attempt to defend her French Open title was the best we have seen since Serena Williams’ attempt in 2016. She is currently the best clay-court player and now that she no longer has the pressure of being defending champion I believe she will once again reign supreme in Paris next year.

  Wimbledon  

2019 Final: (7) Simona Halep d. (11) Serena Williams 6−2, 6−2
Thoughts on the 2019 finalists…

The only players who have successfully defended a Wimbledon title this century are the Williams sisters. Simona Halep‘s grass-court game is not even close to either of them in their prime and therefore does not seem poised to retain the championship. Serena Williams is still a league above the rest of the tour on a grass (and hard) courts but is now the weakest player mentally in Grand Slam finals because she is so desperate to win that historic 24th Grand Slam. She may likely make the final again, but as in her last four Grand Slam finals I would expect her to choke and lose in straight sets.

My Predicted Champion: Ashleigh Barty

Ashleigh Barty is like a discount Simona Halep – succeeding despite being small in stature but not as good of a player as Halep. However, as the state of women’s tennis continues to deteriorate, Barty has a good chance of following in Halep’s footsteps by winning Wimbledon the year after winning her maiden Grand Slam title at the French Open.

 Summer  Olympic  Games 

Rio 2016 Gold Medal Match: Monica Puig d. (2) Angelique Kerber 6–4, 4–6, 6–1
Rio 2016 Bronze Medal Match: (11) Petra Kvitová d. (7) Madison Keys 7–5, 2–6, 6–2
Thoughts on the 2016 medallists…

Some thought Monica Puig‘s surprise run to the Gold Medal in Rio was going to be the start of something but unfortunately she has done nothing of note since. In addition, she is missing the Australian Open with injury and is currently ranked No.79 when the Olympics is 64-player field. Therefore, hopes of another medal do not seem promising. For the other medallists in Rio, Angelique Kerber and Petra Kvitová, they definitely have a chance to win medals again. Women’s Tennis is incredibly wide open right now – if they are in form that week and have a good draw could find themselves on the podium once more.

My Predicted Champion: Serena Williams

As previously stated Serena is still a league above everyone else on hard-courts, the surface for the Tokyo Olympics. As this is not a Grand Slam I do not think Serena will choke because she is not chasing a historic moment. Therefore, just like in 2012 I expect to see her as the Olympic Champion.

  US Open  

2019 Final: (15) Bianca Andreescu d. (8) Serena Williams 6−3, 7−5
Thoughts on the 2019 finalists…

Bianca Andreescu is the player who I would have the most faith in to defend a Grand Slam title out of last year’s winners. However, just like Naomi Osaka, I think she will realise that defending titles is much harder than winning them initially. Nevertheless, she is a superior player and so I predict a better title defence. Serena Williams has everything required to cruise to the final but I still would not have any faith in her winning the final because of the extreme mental fragility she has displayed in the last two years.

My Predicted Champion: Naomi Osaka

With Andreescu having to deal with the pressure of trying to defend a Grand Slam title for the first time, Naomi Osaka will be in prime position to capitalise and win in New York. All she has to do is make sure she is not ranked No.1 at the time because she cannot win tournaments whilst under the pressure of being the top-ranked player.

  WTA Finals  

2019 Final: (1) Ashleigh Barty d. (8) Elina Svitolina 6-4, 6-3
Thoughts on the 2019 finalists…

Ashleigh Barty did very well to win the WTA Finals as the last four editions had been won by players who had not gone through the emotional rollercoaster of winning a Grand Slam. She is proving herself to be a very reliable player and could well be a contender next year. This court is a dream for a pusher like Elina Svitolina and so it is no surprise that she has made the final the last two years. However, I do not expect it to be three finals in a row as I predict her to miss out on qualification for the tournament next year.

My Predicted Champion: Bianca Andreescu

As Serena Williams will likely skip the tournament if she does not win a Grand Slam, Andreescu is the next best option to take the title. I have been so impressed with how she played throughout the season and as expect her to top off another stellar year in 2020 with her first WTA Finals title. As the player with the highest win rate of any player on tour this year (87%), this seems like a logical pick!

  Year-End Rankings  

At the end of 2020, I expect the Top 10 of the WTA Rankings to look like the following…

Rank. Player Name (Country) (Change)

  1. Bianca Andreescu (CAN) (+4) 
  2. Ashleigh Barty (AUS) (-1)
  3. Naomi Osaka (JPN) (-)
  4. Simona Halep (ROU) (-)
  5. Serena Williams (USA) (+5)
  6. Markéta Vondroušová (CZE) (+10)
  7. Karolína Plíšková (CZE) (-5)
  8. Johanna Konta (GBR) (+4)
  9. Petra Kvitová (CZE) (-2)
  10. Belinda Bencic (SUI) (-2)

So there you have it – these are my predictions for WTA Tour in 2020. I am very excited to see how women’s tennis evolves in this new decade – hopefully there is more consistency so that fans can actually get invested in storylines and rivalries. Let me know your thoughts on my predictions in the comments!

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12 COMMENTS

  1. I don’t think that Simona (Halep) is going to make it in the top ten. I believe there are good opportunities for Sofia Kenin, Amanda Anisimova and Karolina Muchova in 2020, especially on gravel. Serena is always a threat and she has a great Curriculum, but I don’t think she can play her way through a final anymore. No matter how strong Osaka and Andreescu can be, I believe Ashley Barty is the most constant / fit player on the Tour. She is therefore my candidate to end the year as number one.

  2. One problem with your predictions. Not one woman has dominated the women’s tour in the last few years. I think we could be heading for another year of 4 slam champions again. If she can stay healthy and play for long stretches. I expect Madison Keys will be there abouts for a slam break through at either the AO or US open.

  3. Personally, I don’t see Halep ending the year within the top ten. She has a back injury, she has fear on hardcourt, and she doesn’t like to play outside Europe. Osaka and Andreescu are very powerful on hardcourt, and I’m interested to see what kind of battle they will get themselves in to end the year as number one. I wouldn’t count out Barty though. She had a breakthrough herself last year and her game suits all surfaces. Besides, she is very fit all year long. As for the young players, I foresee a breakthrough of Sofia Kenin, possibly Anisimova and Muchova. I favour Osaka to win the Olympics, in front of her home crowd.

  4. Quote: ” Petra Kvitová can no longer beat the top players when they are in good form. That A+ game she once had is no longer within her capacity. Therefore, I don’t see any Grand Slams for her in 2020.” ,but “For the other medallists in Rio, Angelique Kerber and Petra Kvitová, they definitely have a chance to win medals again.” – – – – – End of quote – – – – – If you think that Kvitova and Kerber can win medals in Tokyo, why not AO, US Open or Wimbledon titles (Kvitova and Kerber combined have 3 Wimbledon titles, Kerber is a former AO and US Open champion)? Kerber lost the 2016 final, lost a very close match in 2017 in fourth round against new champion Muguruza and took the crown in 2018. In 2019 Kerber was runner up in Eastbourne (defeated Halep directly before Wimbledon) but lost second round, because she suffered a strange kind of physical fatigue that day. So, please do not overlook Kvitova and Kerber! Especially if Kerber can rebuild her mental focus to 2016 and 2018 (first half of the year) standards, she is still capable of handling the young guns of tennis (remember Wimbledon 2018). And I am sure, that Serena biggest fear would be another Grand Slam final against Kerber. Both, Kvitova and Kerber can add more Grand Slam titles in 2020 to their career lists.

  5. Andreescu is a great talent, I think her game will be found out more this year so she’ll have a tougher time dispatching opponents. Osaka will likely win the Olympics, she’s very strong at home. Serena, if fit, will win at least one of the first 2 slams or fade away. The women’s draw will see more new talents in 2020 so there’ll be much tougher matches like the men saw towards the end of 2019.

    I believe Osaka or Barty will be end of year Number 1. Pliskova may win a slam. Kerber, Kvitova are strong but on their way out it seems

  6. My top ten :

    1. Naomi Osaka GS, OG
    2. Ashleigh Barty GS
    3. Karolina Plìsková
    4. Bianca Andreescu
    5. Elina Svitolina
    6. Sofia Kenin
    7. Serena Williams GS
    8. Amanda Anisimova GS
    9. Belinda Bencic
    10. Aryna Sabalenka

  7. My top ten :

    1. Ashleigh Barty (AO)
    2. Naomi Osaka (Olympics)
    3. Bianca Andreescu (RG, WTA Finals)
    4. Simona Halep (USO)
    5. Karolina Pliskova
    6. Serena Williams (WB)
    7. Sofia Kenin
    8. Elina Svitolina
    9. Johanna Konta
    10. Amanda Anisimova

  8. My top 10

    1 – Andreescu
    2 – Barty
    3 – Svitolina
    4 – Osaka
    5 – Bertens
    6 – Halep
    7 – Pliskova
    8 – Bencic
    9 – Sabalenka
    10 – Williams

    Other mentions:

    Yastremska
    Kenin
    Muchova
    Mertens
    Sakkari
    Rybakina
    Kontaveit

  9. I like strong opinions. So, thanks man!

    However, I do disagree on a couple of points you make. I think it’s so darn exciting to watch
    so many contenders for any WTA event — including the Premier events.

    Serena might actually win another GS. Because of the above point. Undoubtedly the great one, wish
    she and Steffi were in the same decade!

    Andreescu’s nonchalance is great. But she plays some points as if!
    It’s between her and Osaka. I’ll hedge a Barty in there too.

    It’s a bit strange to actually predict GSs without any indication of form, injury, mental “hunger”.
    So, I’ll just say that the players that would make some betting profits, in no order are:
    Muchova, Halep, Osaka, Barty, Andreescu, Kenin, Ka Pliskova, Bencic.

    Next fresh talent: Kalinskaya, Anisimova, Yastremska, Gauff.

    There’s a second tier consisting of Kvitova, Svitolina, Kerber, Bertens, Mertens, Konta, Muguruza, Alexandrova, Rybakina. They can win most matches until quarters of every tournament. If drawn with each other, look for Svitolina and Kvitova to win most.

  10. You just have missed the seeing tennis between the US open and the WTA final. Osaka played far better tennis and avenged some losses in Japan and China, including beating Andreescu. I think Osaka will take the four of six tournaments in 2020 (the faster Australia, Wimbledon and US surfaces and Olympic gold at home). She’ll need some help in Paris to deliver her and another fast court player to the final to seriously be considered for the Golden Slam. But she’s a different player than post Australia 2019, so look out. My quick thoughts on the contenders – Barty will suffer from post #1 symptoms, Halep has the best chance to take a major, Andreescu will suffer from fitness/injury problems, and, Bencic will be the most improved player in 2020 and come the closest to knocking off any one of the major favorites.

    • I think muguruza and Halep has a chance win slams..rest is scattered between the top 10 players..also.. injury is a main concern for Bianca..WTA finals happen for the next 10 years in slow courts..which doesn’t suit her injury prone body!

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