Barbora Strycova vs. Angelique Kerber
|Date & Time||Thursday February 14, 2019, 11:00 AM (EST)|
Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex
The Line: -- Over/Under:
Barbora Strycova and Angelique Kerber meet in the quarterfinals of the 2019 tennis Qatar Open.
Barbora Strycova is coming off a three sets win over Anna Blinkova that took 18 games to decide. In the victory, Strycova won 63 percent of her first serve points and 45 percent of her second serve points. Strycova won 57 percent of her total service points and converted on eight of 23 break points. Strycova didn’t lose a single game in the two sets she won, and she’s produced a combined 32 break points in her first two matches. Strycova isn’t playing like somebody who entered this tournament losing six of her last 10 matches. Strycova now has a chance to win three matches in a single tournament for the first time since making the semifinals in Birmingham back in June. Strycova has split her last six matches on hard court.
Angelique Kerber is coming off a straight sets win over Anett Kontaveit that took 20 games to decide. In the victory, Kerber won 67 percent of her first serve points and 62 percent of her second serve points. Kerber won 65 percent of her total service points and converted on five of her 16 break points. Kerber got 76 percent of her first serves in play, and if that’s a trend that continues, she gives herself a tremendous chance to win this tournament. It was an overall solid performance from a player who hasn’t played a match since the Australian Open. Kerber has won seven of her last 10 matches on hard court.
These two have played seven times and Kerber has won six of those meetings. The most recent match was in Dubai of last year, a match Kerber won in 15 games. All seven meetings were decided in straight sets and Strycova’s only win over Kerber came in Madrid of 2016.
Usually there’s more to predicting a tennis match than glancing at the head to head history, but Kerber has won six of the seven matches against Strycova and all of those wins were decided in straight sets. When the history between two players is that strong, it usually continues. Strycova does nothing that scares Kerber, and she was dragged up and down the court when they met last year.
I’ll back Kerber in straight sets.