Fixture: (1) Ashleigh Barty vs Magda Linette
Date: 03 June 2021
Tournament: Roland Garros 2021
Round: Second round (Round of 64)
Venue: Paris, France
Category: Grand Slam
Surface: Red Clay
Prize money: €17,171,108
Match timing: 12 pm local time, 10 am GMT, 6 am EST, 3.30 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - NBC Sports / Tennis Channel | UK - ITV | India - Star Sports / Disney+ Hotstar VIP
Ashleigh Barty vs Magda Linette preview
Barty's injury was the biggest talking point from her first-round win over the 70th-ranked Bernarda Pera. The Australian had her left thigh strapped and struggled mightily, especially on serve. Throughout the match she was a pale shadow of the player who won the Stuttgart title this year and finished runner-up in Madrid.
In her post-match press conference, the 25-year-old revealed that a hip injury had flared up over the weekend which severely compromised her movement. Even though she wasn't at 100% on Tuesday, Barty is optimistic of improving over the course of the week.
Barty's next opponent, Magda Linette, reached a career-high ranking of No. 33 last year but is now languishing at 45th after a disappointing season. The Pole went on a five-match losing streak before finally finding her rhythm in Strasbourg, where she made the semifinals.
The 29-year-old was able to bring that momentum to Roland Garros, cruising to a 6-3, 6-3 win over unheralded Frenchwoman Chloe Paquet in the first round.
Ashleigh Barty vs Magda Linette head-to-head
Ashleigh Barty and Magda Linette have never crossed paths on the tour before, so their head-to-head currently stands at a 0-0 deadlock.
Ashleigh Barty vs Magda Linette prediction
Even though the World No. 1 is the favorite to come through this match, a lot depends on her fitness levels.
Linette is a defensive player who likes to engage in baseline rallies. Under normal circumstances, Barty wouldn't have much trouble getting past such a player.
However, these are not normal circumstances, with questions surrounding Barty's fitness. If Barty's hip injury impedes her movement, Linette will fancy her chances of putting the Australian on the backfoot by coming forward and finishing points at the net.
That said, Barty's mental strength is one of her biggest assets. Even if she does struggle physically, she should be able to dig deep and will herself to victory.
Prediction: Ashleigh Barty to win in two tight sets.