You are currently viewing Qatar Open 2023: Maria Sakkari vs. Qinwen Zheng Tennis Pick and Prediction

Qatar Open 2023: Maria Sakkari vs. Qinwen Zheng Tennis Pick and Prediction

TennisSection previews the 2023 Qatar Open as Maria Sakkari takes on Qinwen Zheng in the first round on Tuesday, February 14, 2023.

After her semifinal exit in Linz, did Maria Sakkari miss on a golden chance to win her second WTA title? Possibly. But the Greek No. 1 is among the favorites to win the Qatar Open, although she faces stiff competition this week and a treacherous draw. She opens up against China’s rising star Qinwen Zheng. Who will prevail?

Maria Sakkari has been improving her results at the Qatar Open over the years. Two seasons ago, she reached the last eight, and last season she made the semifinal when the tournament was categorized as WTA 1000. Could she go one better this time? It is a tall order especially with the big guns in the draw this week. Sakkari wasted a golden chance at last week’s WTA 250 event in Linz where she lost in the semifinal to Petra Martic as the top seed.

Qinwen Zheng, meanwhile, kicked off her Middle East swing in Abu Dhabi this past week where she produced a series of breathtaking performances to reach the last four. She was defeated by the in-form Ludmilla Samsonova in three sets. That run in UAE’s capital took Zheng to a career-high of No. 24 and will be looking to win on her main draw debut at the Qatar Open when she takes on Maria Sakkari.

Maria Sakkari leads Qinwen Zheng 1-0 in their head-to-head. It’s a marquee opening match at the Qatar Open that pits the World No. 7 against the World No. 24. Both players come into this match following a very strong week in their respective tournaments in the first week of February. Sakkari might be a tad disappointed not to have won the title in Linz as the top seed. It’s a flip of a coin here. Zheng is rapidly improving, but she is still far from a finished article and I think that big-match experience at key moments is still a work in progress. I’ll give the Greek No. 1 a slight edge.

Free Tennis Prediction and Pick: Maria Sakkari in 3 sets

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