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Roland Garros: Leylah Fernandez vs Polona Hercog preview, head-to-head & prediction | French Open 2020

Leylah Fernandez
Leylah Fernandez
Rudra Biswas
ANALYST
Modified 30 Sep 2020, 21:51 IST
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Match details

Fixture: Leylah Fernandez vs Polona Hercog

Date: 1 October 2020

Tournament: Roland Garros 2020

Round: Second round (Round of 64)

Venue: Paris, France

Category: Grand Slam

Surface: Red clay

Prize money: Approx. €38,000,000

Live telecast: USA - NBC Sports / Tennis Channel | India - Star Sports / Disney+ Hotstar VIP

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Leylah Fernandez vs Polona Hercog preview

Leylay Fernandez at the 2020 US Open
Leylay Fernandez at the 2020 US Open

Teenage phenom Leylah Fernandez made her French Open debut on Monday, and will be looking to continue her run when she takes on World No. 47 Polona Hercog in the second round on Thursday.

Fernandez happens to be one of the most promising teenagers on the WTA tour right now. Already in the top 100, the Canadian has made plenty of waves in 2020 with her unique game.

The 18-year-old reached the final in Acapulco earlier this year, losing to Heather Watson. Fernandez would then go on to rack up multiple wins over Slam champion Sloane Stephens in succeeding events.

However, the young Canadian's breakout run was halted at the start of the Western & Southern Open, and she lost three of her last four matches prior to the French Open. Fernandez then seemed to be on her way out against World No.36 Magda Linette in the first round of the French Open, before staging a comeback to win in three sets.

Now standing in Fernandez's way is Slovenia's Polona Hercog, who is a veteran on the WTA tour.

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Hercog had been in less than inspiring form after the tour resumption, losing in the first round at both Palermo and Prague. But the World No. 47 has since steadied the ship, reaching the quarterfinals at the Istanbul Open and the Round of 16 at the Italian Open.

Leylah Fernandez vs Polona Hercog head-to-head

The second-round match in Paris will be the first-ever career meeting between Leylah Fernandez and Polona Hercog, so the head-to-head currently stands at 0-0.

Leylah Fernandez vs Polona Hercog prediction

Polona Hercog
Polona Hercog

Leylah Fernandez is a great mover and does well against heavy topspin - a skill which will especially come in handy on the slow terre battue of Paris. The Canadian has solid groundstrokes herself and makes use of her quick footwork to to stay with her opponents in the rallies.

Polona Hercog, on the other hand, hits heavy groundstrokes and will be looking to target Fernandez's underdeveloped serve with deep returns. The Slovenian enjoys playing on clay, and will be the favorite to win the match on paper.

However, Fernandez has proven her credentials in Paris - having won the girls' singles title last year - and is unlikely to be intimidated by her opponent's expertise.

Prediction: Laylah Fernandez to win in three sets.

Published 30 Sep 2020, 14:49 IST
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