Azarenka vs. Pliskova
|Date & Time||Tuesday March 27, 2018, 11:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: -- Over/Under:
Karolina Pliskova and Victoria Azarenka meet in the quarterfinals of the tennis 2018 Miami Open.
Karolina Pliskova is coming off a straight sets win over Zarina Diyas that took 11 games to decide. In the victory, Pliskova won 100 percent of her first serve points and 40 percent of her second serve points. Pliskova cruised easily in her fourth round match before her opponent retired early in the second set. Pliskova won all 20 of her first serve points and that’s with dropping just one ace. Pliskova isn’t getting as many free points with her serve as usual, but she’s won 12 of her last 16 sets anyway, which is a good sign. Pliskova hopes to make the semifinals of the Miami Open for the second time in her career. Pliskova has lost six of her last seven quarterfinal matches. Pliskova has won eight of her last 11 matches on hard court.
Victoria Azarenka is coming off a straight sets win over Agnieszka Radwanska that took 16 games to decide. In the victory, Azarenka won 58 percent of her first serve points and 33 percent of her second serve points. Azarenka continues her impressive return, as she dominated one of the better players in the game, which included winning 66 percent of her return points. While we still need to see a larger sample size before declaring Azarenka back, she’s clearly playing confident tennis and playing better than most would have predicted. Azarenka hopes to make her fourth career Miami Open semifinal appearance. Azarenka has won three of her last four quarterfinal matches, but this is her first quarters match since the 2016 Miami Open. Azarenka has won 10 of her last 11 matches on hard court.
These two have played three times and Azarenka has won two of those meetings. The most recent match was in the 2016 Indian Wells Masters, a match Azarenka won in three sets. Two of the three meetings have gone the distance and Pliskova’s one win over Azarenka came in the 2015 Brisbane International.
This is going to be the match to really test Azarenka and see where she’s truly at, as there’s no finesse with Pliskova. It’s hard to get a rhythm when she’s hitting her power shots, and Azarenka is sure to be tested mentally and physically. With that said, Pliskova has had her hiccups as of late and isn’t getting nearly the same amount of free points you’re used to seeing. We usually see double-digit aces and ridiculous service percentages. That hasn’t been the case her last few matches.
Either way, I like what I’ve seen from Azarenka up to this point, and I see no reason to bet against her.