Fixture: Johanna Konta vs Irina-Camelia Begu
Date: 17 September 2020
Tournament: Italian Open 2020
Round: Second round (Round of 32)
Venue: Rome, Italy
Category: WTA Premier 5
Surface: Red clay
Prize money: €1,771,082
Match timing: 2.30 pm CEST, 6 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel / ESPN
Johanna Konta vs Irina-Camelia Begu preview
Former World No. 4 Johanna Konta of Great Britain comes into the Italian Open on the back of a semifinal appearance at the Western & Southern Open and a second-round loss at the US Open. Konta is seeded seventh in Rome, and faces Irina-Camelia Begu of Romania in the second round on Thursday.
Currently ranked No. 77 in the world, the 30-year-old Irina-Camelia Begu loves playing on clay. She reached the semifinals of the Prague Open in August, where she stretched World No. 2 Simona Halep to a tie-breaker in the first set.
Begu followed that with a first-round exit to two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova at the US Open, but would be happy to transition back to clay in the lead-up to the French Open.
Johanna Konta vs Irina-Camelia Begu head-to-head
This will be the first meeting between Johanna Konta and Irina-Camelia Begu, so the head-to-head currently stands at 0-0.
Johanna Konta vs Irina-Camelia Begu prediction
The 29-year-old Johanna Konta is known to be a strong all-court player. She has reached the semifinals of the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon, and the quarterfinals of the US Open.
The Brit is ranked No. 13 in the world currently, and she did extremely well on clay last year. Konta made the finals in Rabat and at this every tournament - the Italian Open - in 2019, before making it to the semifinals of the French Open in Paris.
This will be the Brit's first match at the event after a first-round bye, but on paper she is definitely the big favorite to book a place in the Round of 16.
Irina-Camelia Begu, meanwhile, has done reasonably well this year on the tour. She won a $100K event in Egypt and the $125K event in Indian Wells prior to the tennis shutdown.
Begu has come through the qualifying draw here, including a win over former French Open finalist Sara Errani, and already has three wins under her belt in Rome. The Romanian can stay with Konta from the back of the court, but the problem for her is that everything she does, Konta does a little better.
Prediction: Johanna Konta to win in three sets.Published 17 Sep 2020, 01:55 IST