Fixture: (30) Kristina Mladenovic vs Hailey Baptiste
Date: 31 August 2020
Tournament: US Open 2020
Round: First round (Round of 128)
Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York, USA
Category: Grand Slam
Surface: Outdoor hardcourt
Prize money: $39,024,000
Match timing: 11 am EDT, 8:30 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel / ESPN | India - Star Sports / Hotstar
Kristina Mladenovic vs Hailey Baptiste preview
2015 US Open quarterfinalist Kristina Mladenovic takes on American teenager Hailey Baptiste as she begins her campaign at the Flushing Meadows on Monday.
Since her split with coach Sascha Bajin, the 43rd-ranked Frenchwoman struggled in the first two months of the year before catching fire in Dubai where she reached the Round of 16 after emerging from qualifying. She did show some of that spirit and courage at WTA Cincinnati as well, in a fighting 1-6, 7-6(5), 3-6 loss to World No. 22 Elise Mertens.
Mladenovic's first-round opponent, world No. 234 Hailey Baptiste, created quite a stir last year when she upset former US Open runner-up Madison Keys on her WTA main-draw debut at the Citi Open. This year, the 18-year-old won a qualifying round at the Australian Open, with her best performance of the season being a semi-final appearance at the ITF/USTA $25,000 in California.
Kristina Mladenovic vs Hailey Baptiste head-to-head
Kristina Mladenovic holds a 1-0 record in their head-to-head rivalry with Hailey Baptiste. The pair's solitary clash happened on the Citi Open hardcourts last year where Baptiste made her breakthrough. In that one match, Baptiste impressed with her big serve and heavy topspin. The teen looked fearless and gave it her all before bowing out 4-6, 6-4, 3-6 to the more experienced Frenchwoman.
Kristina Mladenovic vs Hailey Baptiste prediction
At the Cincinnati Open, Kristina Mladenovic's serve was a liability, but she was able to stay toe-to-toe with one of the most in-form players of the season - Elise Mertens. That performance was an encouraging one and should boost her confidence a great deal as she begins her US Open challenge.
The former world number ten would need it against Baptiste who wouldn't be an easy customer as was evident in the pair's solitary face-off. Baptiste was composed under pressure and stretched Mladenovic to three sets with her clutch-play in that match. She would look to do an encore, but Mladenovic's experience should ultimately see her through.
Prediction: Kristina Mladenovic to win in three sets.Published 30 Aug 2020, 04:59 IST