Tournament: Qatar TotalEnergies Open.
Date: 22 February, 2022.
Round: Second round (Round of 32).
Venue: Doha, Qatar.
Category: WTA 1000.
Surface: Outdoor Hardcourt.
Prize money: $2,331,698.
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel | UK - Amazon Prime Video.
Barbora Krejcikova vs Magda Linette preview
Second seed Barbora Krejcikova will open her Qatar Open campaign against World No. 67 Magda Linette on Tuesday.
The French Open champion made a fine start to the season with a runner-up finish in Sydney and a maiden quarterfinal appearance at the Australian Open.
But the Middle Eastern swing has so far turned out to be disappointing for the World No. 3. Spirited Ukrainian qualifier Dayana Yastremska knocked Krejcikova out of Dubai last week with a 6-3, 7-6 (3) scoreline.
The Czech will now look to put it behind her and make a fresh start in Doha. Standing in front of her is 30-year-old Polish veteran Magda Linette.
Having made the semifinals in Strasbourg and Cleveland last year, it has been a quiet start to the 2022 season for Linette. The former World No. 33 has played four events so far, succumbing to a first-round defeat in two of those.
The two-time WTA titlist, however, managed to bounce back with a gutsy three-set win over Alison Riske in the first round in Doha on Monday. After edging the American in a tight second-set tie-break, Linette raced away in the decider to a 2-6, 7-6 (5), 6-1 win.
The win would have boosted her confidence level and the Pole will be eager to ride on it and make a strong statement against Krejcikova next.
Barbora Krejcikova vs Magda Linette head-to-head
Krejcikova leads the head-to-head against Linette 1-0. The Czech emerged victorious 4-6, 7-6 (3), 6-4 in their only encounter so far in the first round of qualifying in Toronto five years ago.
Barbora Krejcikova vs Magda Linette prediction
Linette landed 80% of her first serves against Alison Riske in the first round and converted six of her eight break-point opportunities. It wasn't exactly a performance of the highest order but the Pole's clutch tennis saved the day.
She needs to come up with more of the same if she wants to upset someone as feisty as Krejcikova. Linette has to stay toe-to-toe in the rallies with the Czech and use her slice backhands to good effect to disrupt the second seed's momentum.
But that is easier said than done. Krejcikova is a master at converting defense into offense. Her footwork, sharp angles and variety add another dimension to her game.
The World No. 3 has been playing solid tennis for more than a year now. It's unlikely she will let go of this opportunity to rebound in Doha after her early loss in Dubai.
Prediction: Krejcikova to win in two tight sets.