Fixture: Amanda Anisimova vs Donna Vekic
Date: 14 September 2020
Tournament: Italian Open 2020
Round: First round (Round of 64)
Venue: Rome, Italy
Category: WTA Premier 5
Surface: Red clay
Prize money: €1,771,082
Match timing: 12.30 pm CEST, 4 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel / ESPN
Amanda Anisimova vs Donna Vekic preview
Amanda Anisimova makes her return to claycourt tennis as she takes on Donna Vekic in the first round of the Italian Open on Monday.
Anisimova produced by far the best result of her career at the French Open last year where she reached the semifinal, but since then she has blown hot and cold. After starting well in 2020 by reaching the semifinal in Auckland, Anisimova struggled to carry that momentum into the rest of her season.
On the American hardcourts, the 19-year-old lost in the second round at the Western & Southern Open and in the third round at the US Open.
Anisimova's opponent Donna Vekic comes into the match as the 18th seed. Vekic herself has not been in top form this year; after losing to eventual champion Victoria Azarenka in the first round at the Western & Southern Open, she lost in the third round at the US Open.
Vekic does have the edge over Anisimova in terms of match sharpness lately though, having also played two match at the Palermo Open in August.
Amanda Anisimova vs Donna Vekic head-to-head
The match in Rome is the first between Amanda Anisimova and Donna Vekic, so the head-to-head stands at 0-0 between the pair. Both players are close to each other in the WTA rankings, as Anismova is ranked 28th while Vekic is ranked 24th.
Amanda Anisimova vs Donna Vekic prediction
Similar form and similar attacking styles of play make the matchup between Amanda Anisimova and Donna Vekic a particularly difficult one to call. But Anisimova will rely on her prowess on clay and fancy her chances against Vekic, who has suffered plenty of highs and lows in the recent past.
The 19-year-old will look to stick to her attacking brand of tennis and use her heavy forehand, which is capable of wreaking havoc for any opponent on her day. She will, however, have to guard against lapses on the second serve, which has been shaky on occasion in the past.
The Croat, on the other hand, can use her big first serve to dictate points and decide the rhythm of the match. She can also put pressure on Anisimova in long baseline exchanges to elicit unforced errors, something that has been Anisimova's Achilies' heel across her short career.
Given both players' ability with their forehand, expect plenty of winners from that wing and blistering cross-court rallies from the two right-handers.
Prediction: Amanda Anisimova to win in three sets.Published 14 Sep 2020, 03:02 IST