Fixture: Alison Riske vs Julia Goerges
Date: 29 September 2020
Tournament: Roland Garros 2020
Round: First round (Round of 128)
Venue: Paris, France
Category: Grand Slam
Surface: Red clay
Prize money: Approx. €38,000,000
Match timing: Approx. 4 pm CEST, 7.30 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - NBC Sports / Tennis Channel | India - Star Sports / Disney+ Hotstar VIP
Also check out: The Complete French Open 2020 Schedule
Alison Riske vs Julia Goerges preview
Number 19 seed Alison Riske will face the unseeded Julia Goerges on Tuesday in the first round of the 2020 French Open.
Since reaching the Round of 16 at the Australian Open, Riske's 2020 has gone conspicuously south. The American has won only one of her four matches since the trip Down Under.
At her home Grand Slam last month, Riske suffered a shocking second-round defeat at the hands of Ann Li where she won only three games in the match.
The 30-year-old's troubles don't seem to be ending any time soon, as she has never quite got going on clay. Riske lost her opening match in Rome, despite having led by a set.
A quarterfinalist at last year's Wimbledon, Riske has never come close to producing the same performance in the French capital. She has won just one main draw match in six appearances at Roland Garros.
Germany's Julia Goerges has a much better record on clay compared to her opponent. The 31-year-old reached the Round of 16 at Roland Garros in 2018, and won her first two WTA titles on clay.
However, the German's recent form is just as bad, as she has won just 50% of her matches this year. Goerges has played only one match since the lockdown - in Rome - and that doesn't present a pretty picture about her current game as she was able to win just one game the entire contest.
Alison Riske vs Julia Goerges head-to-head
The head-to-head between Alison Riske and Julia Goerges is dead even and currently stands at 2-2.
Riske has stood tall in her recent meetings against Goerges. She won in straight sets in Dubai 2019 and in three sets at the Australian Open earlier this year.
Alison Riske vs Julia Goerges prediction
In their recent meeting at Melbourne, Alison Riske got the better of Julia Goerges by being the calmer, less erratic player of the two. The American hit almost as many winners as her opponent while making less than half the unforced errors.
Riske employs a style tailor-made for grass, with flat groundstrokes aimed at angling the ball away rather than out-muscling the opponent. That doesn't often work on clay, where good movers can easily chase down her shots.
However, the American's down-the-line backhand can do damage on any surface, so players always have to keep an eye out for that. Riske is also good at finishing points at the net.
Julia Goerges is certainly the more powerful of the two, generating a huge amount of topspin on her forehand which can often be unplayable as it shoots through the court. However, her backhand can be vulnerable in rallies, inviting the opponent to step forward and take control.
Goerges' ability to hit through the court even with the heavier balls at this year's French Open makes her the favorite. But if she starts spraying unforced errors like in their match in Australia, Riske will be ready to capitalize.
Prediction: Julia Goerges to win in three sets.
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