TennisSection previews the 2021 US Open as Petra Kvitova (10) meets Polona Hercog in the First Round on Tuesday August 31st, 2021.
World number eleven Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic starts her 2021 US Open campaign with a First Round encounter against Slovenia’s Polona Hercog. Kvitova has been struggling with consistency over the past few seasons and will be hoping to bring some stability to her season with a deep run here. It has been a forgettable season for Hercog, but she is a highly experienced player, capable of some strong tennis. Can she cause the huge upset here and knock the tenth seed out of the competition?
Petra Kvitova is the tenth seed here at the 2021 US Open and is currently ranked #11 in the WTA world rankings. She has been having a solid but inconsistent season, winning the title in Doha and reaching the Semis at the Bad Homberg Open being the highlights. Otherwise she has struggled to maintain consistent results, which is unusual for the former Grand Slam champion. She reached the Quarter-Finals in Cincinnati with some impressive wins over Madison Keys and Ons Jabeur, but then she had to retire with a stomach illness. Assuming that she is now 100% healthy she is considered the favorite here against her opponent Polona Hercog, someone that she has never lost to.
Polona Hercog is unseeded here at the 2021 US Open, and is ranked #86 in the world rankings. The talented Slovenian has shown flashes of quality throughout her career but has always struggled to achieve consistent results. She has had a very poor season so far this year, winning just two hard court matches in total, and will be desperate to find some sort of form here. Unfortunately she has been handed a very difficult draw and will face the former world number two Petra Kvitova. Hercog is more of a clay courter, so playing against a former Grand Slam champion on a surface than she doesn’t love seems to be a recipe for disaster. She is a very experienced player and is capable of solid tennis but things are not looking good for her here in New York.
This will be the third meeting between the two players on the WTA Tour, with Kvitova leading the head to head series 2-0. The Czech has never lost a set to her opponent Polona Hercog and I expect that trend to continue here at the 2021 US Open. The only concern is her fitness, but we have to assume that she is back to full health, and I am backing Petra Kvitova to win this match rather comfortably, advancing to the Second Round here at the 2021 US Open. The tall lefty has not been at her best in recent years and will be attempting to turn back the clock and go on a deep run here in New York.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Petra Kvitova to win in straight sets
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