After crossing paths last week at the Toray Pan Pacific Open, Caroline Wozniacki and Carla Suarez Navarro will meet for a third time on the professional tour – and the second time in as many weeks – in the second round of the inaugural Wuhan Open. With the head-to-head series tied at 1-1, the stage is set for an enticing rubber match to settle the score between them.
Following her magnificent fortnight at Flushing Meadows, where she defeated a gauntlet of opponents, including Andre Petkovic, Maria Sharapova, Sara Errani and Shuai Peng to reach the final of the US Open. While she ultimately fell short to Serena Williams, it was clear that the Dane was back in her pre-2010 form. She would follow up with a strong showing in Tokyo, where she worked her way to the final before losing to an inspired Ana Ivanovic in straight sets.
Following her quarter-final loss to Wozniacki last week, Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro kickstarted her week in Wuhan with a 7-5, 6-4 victory over Chinese wildcard Zhang Kai-Lin. She now holds the second most wins on the WTA tour in 2014 with 47.
“It was difficult for me today,” Suárez Navarro said. “I arrived from Tokyo just yesterday, and it’s a different place, different court, so it wasn’t easy to adjust. Also she was playing really well and the crowd was supporting her a lot, which made it even tougher. But I feel pretty good too.”
With the rubber match set to take place on hard court, it is a contest that will likely favour Wozniacki again, as she is coming off a straight sets win over the Spaniard just under a week ago. Whether the Dane can maintain her level of play in Wuhan is yet to be determined.
Prediction: Caroline Wozniacki in Three Sets