WTA Western & Southern Open Preview 2013
The busy run up to the 2013 US Open continues this week with another Premier Tier event on the WTA. The best in the world are in Ohio, at the WTA Cincinnati tournament (also known as the Western and Southern Open). Last week saw Serena Williams step up and power her way to yet another title in her long, illustrious career, as she simply sat back, watched her competitors fall by the wayside and beat young Sorana Cirstea in the final.
Little surprise that the American is again heading up the field with strong favouritism and even though Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka return this week, the draw is handily poised for Williams. Williams could either go up against Agneiszka Radwanska or Na Li in the semi final. Both of them went to the semi’s of Toronto last week, but once again Radwanska came up short against Williams at that stage, although the Pole dug in really well. It could potentially be a semi final rematch this week. But defending Champion Li went well with her flat hitting on the hard court last week, so it should be a tight chase to win the second quarter and the right to play Williams in the semi.
Will Sharapova or Azarenka make an impact from the other side of the draw? Both are returning after missing some action because of injury, so there are questions over match sharpness, which isn’t going to help in trying to take down Williams. Both are so similarly matched, both have power, both have tremendous all round games and both have relatively easy draws to get to the semi’s. With them scheduled to meet in the final four, which way would you swing? Sharapova, unlike Williams and Azarenka has actually won Cincinnati before, that and given the fact that she has started to turn the tide against the Belarusian, winning the last two meetings, would just edge the Russian.
Sharapova has new coach Jimmy Connors behind her now and just as a note, the last time he briefly worked with her was back before the 2008 Australian Open. Sharapova went on to win the major for the only time in her career.
Tipster’s Best Tips
Maria Sharapova Outright Winner @ 11/2 with Betfred
Serena Williams Outright Winner @ 4/5 with Betfred