Pliskova vs. Kerber
|Date & Time||Friday September 22, 2017, 9:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: -- Over/Under:
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Angelique Kerber and Karolina Pliskova meet in the quarterfinals of the 2017 Toray Pan Pacific Open.
Angelique Kerber is coming off a straight sets win over Daria Kasatkina that took 22 games to decide. In the victory, Kerber won 74 percent of her first serve points and 72 percent of her second serve points. Kerber is still trying to find her consistent form from a year ago, as she’s had an up-and-down season, especially on hard court. The good news is Kerber has won all four sets in this tournament and is winning no less than 40 percent of her return points to go along with an effective serve. It’ll be interesting to see if Kerber can keep it up in her fifth quarterfinal match of the season. Kerber has split her last eight quarterfinal matches. Kerber has split her last six matches on hard court.
Karolina Pliskova is coming off a straight sets win over Magda Linette that took 15 games to decide. In the victory, Pliskova won 91 percent of her first serve points and 70 percent of her second serve points. Pliskova looked very sharp in her first match since the US Open, as she lost just two of 22 first serve points and won 49 percent of her return points. It was damn near a flawless match for Pliskova, and the type of performance that will win her this tournament if she can repeat it for three more matches. Pliskova has now won 10 of her last 14 sets played. Pliskova has split her last eight quarterfinal matches. Pliskova has won eight of her last 10 matches on hard court.
These two have played eight times in the past and Kerber has won five of those meetings. The most recent match was in the 2016 US Open, a match Kerber won in three sets. Kerber has won three of the last four matches against Pliskova.
This is going to be a fun match and a real test for Kerber to see if she truly has regained her form. While anything is possible, you can’t back Kerber against elite competition until she proves herself again. Kerber has zero wins over top-10 players this season and has reached just one semifinal since the Indian Wells Masters. Pliskova is going to put a lot of pressure on the German and if Kerber can’t counter, it’s going to be a long night.
Have no choice but to side with Pliskova here.