Miami Open draw 2023: Women's singles draw analysis, preview & prediction ft. potential QF between Iga Swiatek and Elena Rybakina

Iga Swiatek, Aryna Sabalenka and Elena Rybakina will be among the favorites to win the Miami Open
Iga Swiatek, Aryna Sabalenka and Elena Rybakina will be among the favorites to win the Miami Open

The 2023 Miami Open draw has taken place, with the women's singles brackets decided. We are in for another few days of tennis bonanza following the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells.

Iga Swiatek won the Miami Open last year, thrashing Naomi Osaka 6-4, 6-0 in the final. The Pole will be a heavy favorite to win this year's tournament as well and will be eager to lay her hands on the trophy after her title defense in Indian Wells ended in the semifinals.

However, there are a number of players who are capable of challenging for the Miami Open title — like Aryna Sabalenka, Indian Wells champion Elena Rybakina and Jessica Pegula, among others.

The women's singles draw has been released and we could see some enticing thrillers over the next 12 days. On that note, let's take a look at how the women's singles draw at the 2023 Miami Open could unfold.


First Quarter: Iga Swiatek will be eager to defend her Miami Open title

Iga Swiatek in action at the BNP Paribas Open
Iga Swiatek in action at the BNP Paribas Open

Seeded Players: (1) Iga Swiatek, (8) Daria Kasatkina, (10) Elena Rybakina, (13) Beatriz Haddad Maia, (21) Paula Badosa, (24) Jelena Ostapenko, (25) Martina Trevisan, (29) Petra Martic

Expected quarterfinal: Iga Swiatek vs Elena Rybakina

Dark Horse: Alycia Parks

Analysis: Top seed Iga Swiatek will be determined to defend her title in Miami following her defeat to Elena Rybakina in the BNP Paribas Open semifinals. The Pole has received a draw that should see her stroll to the fourth round without much difficulty. Here, she could face either 13th seed Beatriz Haddad Maia or 24th seed Jelena Ostapenko.

While both players are capable of making things difficult for Swiatek, she should be able to defeat them and book her place in the quarterfinals.

The other side of this draw has Indian Wells champion Elena Rybakina, who has had quite the start to the 2023 season. She will face either Anna Kalinskaya or Victoria Jimenez Kasintseva in the second round and will most likely beat either of the two comprehensively to reach the third round.

Here, Rybakina will most likely face 21st seed Paula Badosa, who was her opponent at this stage of the BNP Paribas Open. Her form should see her beat the Spaniard once again and reach the fourth round, where she will most probably face eighth seed Daria Kasatkina, although the likes of Petra Martic and Alycia Parks should not be written off.

Kasatkina beat Rybakina in their last meeting at the 2022 Silicon Valley Classic. However, the Kazakh has been in pretty good form lately and should be able to beat the 25-year-old to set up a quarterfinal clash against Swiatek.

Quarterfinal prediction: Iga Swiatek def. Elena Rybakina


Second Quarter: All-American quarterfinal between Jessica Pegula and Coco Gauff on the cards

Jessica Pegula and Coco Gauff could face each other in the quarterfinals of the Miami Open
Jessica Pegula and Coco Gauff could face each other in the quarterfinals of the Miami Open

Seeded Players: (3) Jessica Pegula, (6) Coco Gauff, (12) Liudmila Samsonova, (14) Victoria Azarenka, (20) Magda Linette, (23) Zheng Qinwen, (27) Anastasia Potapova, (30) Danielle Collins

Expected Quarterfinal: Coco Gauff vs Jessica Pegula

Dark Horse: Linda Fruhvirtova

Analysis: This quarter has third seed Jessica Pegula, who will be eager to have a good run in Miami after losing in the fourth round of the BNP Paribas Open.

Pegula could face the talented Linda Fruhvirtova in her opening match and should manage to beat the Czech, even if it is by narrow margins. In 30th seed Danielle Collins, the American could face another tough opponent in the third round.

The World No. 3 beat her compatriot in a thrilling fixture in Toronto last year and will likely attain another hard-fought win to book her place in the Round of 16. Here, former World No.1 Victoria Azarenka could be her most-likely opponent but Magda Linette has a fair chance as well.

Azarenka beat Pegula in the Australian Open quarterfinals and the American will be eager to avenge that defeat. She should just about manage to beat the Belarusian and reach the quarterfinals of the Miami Open.

The other half of this quarter has sixth seed Coco Gauff, who will face either Yulia Putintseva or Rebecca Marino in the second round. The teenager should be able to defeat either player to reach the third round, where her potential opponents include Anastasia Potapova and Marta Kostyuk.

Gauff is more than capable of beating either player and should be able to book her place in the Round of 16, where she will most likely face either 12th seed Liudmila Samsonova or 23rd seed Zheng Qinwen. The 19-year-old could be given a tough fight by either player, but she should be able to come out on top and reach the quarterfinals of the Miami Open.

Quarterfinal prediction: Jessica Pegula def. Coco Gauff


Third Quarter: Ons Jabeur, Maria Sakkari, Belinda Bencic and Petra Kvitova make for an exciting draw

Maria Sakkari in action at the BNP Paribas Open
Maria Sakkari in action at the BNP Paribas Open

Seeded Players: (4) Ons Jabeur, (7) Maria Sakkari, (9) Belinda Bencic, (15) Petra Kvitova, (18) Ekaterina Alexanddrova), (22) Donna Vekic, (26) Zhang Shuai, (28) Anhelina Kalinina

Expected Quarterfinal: Petra Kvitova vs Belinda Bencic

Dark Horse: Emma Raducanu

Analysis: This is arguably the most exciting quarter of the Miami Open draw, with a number of quality players present. Seventh seed Maria Sakkari has already received a bye to the second round, where she will face the winner of arguably the most anticipated first-round fixture of the tournament between Emma Raducanu and Bianca Andreescu.

Raducanu produced some promising performances in Indian Wells and there is a fair chance of her beating both Andreescu and Sakkari to reach the third round. Here, she could face Sofia Kenin ahead of 28th seed Anhelina Kalinina. Kenin vs Raducanu would be a tense match and the Brit could get the win to reach the fourth round.

Here, she will most likely face ninth seed Belinda Bencic, who will be eager to bounce back after an early exit in Indian Wells. The Swiss produced some impressive performances at the start of the 2023 season and should be able to pip Raducanu to the quarterfinals.

On the other side of this quarter is fourth seed Ons Jabeur, who has endured a rough start to the 2023 season. The Tunisian has received a fairly favorable draw and should be able to reach the third round without much trouble. Here, she will most likely take on 26th seed Zhang Shuai and should be able to defeat her to reach the fourth round, where she will probably face 15th seed Petra Kvitova.

The Czech looks in good touch at present and defeated Jabeur in their last meeting at the 2022 Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati. There's a fair chance she could triumph over the Tunisian once again and reach the quarterfinals of the Miami Open.

Quarterfinal prediction: Petra Kvitova def. Belinda Bencic.


Fourth Quarter: Caroline Garcia, Barbora Krejcikova and Karolina Pliskova will be expected to challenge Aryna Sabalenka

Aryna Sabalenka will be among the favorites to win the Miami Open
Aryna Sabalenka will be among the favorites to win the Miami Open

Seeded Players: (2) Aryna Sabalenka, (5) Caroline Garcia, (11) Veronika Kudermetova, (16) Barbora Krejcikova, (17) Karolina Pliskova, (19) Madison Keys, (31) Marie Bouzkova, (32) Zhu Lin

Expected Quarterfinal: Aryna Sabalenka vs Karolina Pliskova

Dark Horse: Sorana Cirstea

Analysis: Second seed Aryna Sabalenka will be determined to win the Miami Open after losing the BNP Paribas Open final against Elena Rybakina. The World No. 2 will face either Shelby Rogers or Sloane Stephens in the first round and should be able to get past either of them.

Sabalenka's most-likely opponent in the third round is 31st seed Marie Bouzkova and the Czech's form is far from good to challenge the Belarusian given her recent exploits. The 24-year-old will most probably face 16th seed Barbora Krejcikova in the fourth round, although 19th seed Madison Keys should not be written off.

Sabalenka beat Krejcikova in a tight fixture in Indian Wells and should be able to edge her out again to reach the quarterfinals in Miami.

The other half of this quarter has fifth seed Caroline Garcia, who will probably face Sorana Cirstea in the second round. The Romanian recently beat the 29-year-old in Indian Wells but should be able to avenge her defeat in Miami.

Garcia should manage to get to the fourth round without difficulty, although Zhu Lin should not be written off. The Frenchman will most likely take on 17th seed Karolina Pliskova in the Round of 16 ahead of 11th seed Veronika Kudermetova.

Pliskova has looked in good touch lately, with successive quarterfinals in Dubai and Indian Wells. She should just about manage to beat Garcia and reach a third consecutive quarterfinal.

Quarterfinal prediction: Aryna Sabalenka def. Karolina Pliskova


Semifinal Predictions

Iga Swiatek def. Jessica Pegula

Aryna Sabalenka def. Petra Kvitova

Final Prediction

Aryna Sabalenka def. Iga Swiatek

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Edited by Anirudh
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