Tomorrow in Tokyo starts the matches of the Olympic Games, and we tell you about the main stories of the unique tournament, which takes place once every four years, making predictions for the Olympics, offer analysis of the Olympic draw.
Ashleigh Barty, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, Barbora Krejcikova, Aryna Sabalenka, Petra Kvitova, Garbine Muguruza, Elina Svitolina, Iga Swiatek and Naomi Osaka – what awaits these and other players, who will win the Olympics, who will compete for medals. In our preview.
Top contenders for the title
Green and gold hour 🇦🇺💫
— ITF (@ITFTennis) July 22, 2021
The leader of the seeding was Australian tennis player Ashleigh Barty – the champion of the last “Slam” season. The Australian’s draw: Sorribes-Tormo, Ferro, Pavlyuchenkova, Krejcikova and Sabalenka.
The first two matches of Barty should be warm-up matches – after all, the opponents are clearly inferior in level to the first racket of the world. In the statistics of their personal meetings Ashleigh and Pavlyuchenkova are equal (3:3), but it is worth paying attention to a couple of moments. Anastasia won her first two matches with Barty, but that was eight years ago. Pavlyuchenkova was 22 and Ash was 17 at the time. The next meeting Anastasia won when the Australian was unable to complete the match due to injury. The rest of the matches went to world No. 1.
The Russian had a great showing at Roland Garros but lost in the third round at Wimbledon. So Barty will be the favorite.
In the quarterfinals, the Australian is supposed to meet with Barbora Krejcikova, so a battle of the last two Slams champions can wait for her. Here, too, the statistics are on Ashley’s side. Yes, Krejcikova has added seriously. Yes, she took the hard title in Prague, but she has very little experience and results on this surface.
In seven years of her career, Barbora has never qualified for the US Open, and she has lost five times in Melbourne, plus two more times in the second round. Katerina Siniakova was her most dangerous opponent in Prague, so this triumph won’t make up for her past failures.
Aryna Sabalenka’s tournament draw: Linette, Vekic, Rybakina, Kvitova and Barty. This is a hard match, so the Belarussian is one of the favorites. Aryna is slowly improving and becoming more confident and calm in dangerous situations. On clay and grass a lot of things were against her, but on her best cover it can help. Sabalenka has a great chance for the semifinals and the fight for medals.
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) July 20, 2021
Naomi Osaka is the nominal leader in the second half, and this is generally justified. Naomi is the best tennis player of recent years and the best hard player of Serena and Henin. The Japanese is only 23, but she already has four Slams, all on hard. She has confirmed her success at each of the winning Majors. And now she’ll start at her home Olympics.
Osaka’s main enemy will be pressure. The Japanese woman obviously cannot cope with it, making peculiar decisions to improve the situation. The tournament organizers are ready to meet the best tennis player in the history of the country (Osaka was supposed to open the tournament on Saturday, but her match was moved to the next day – so there will be less pressure), and there will be no spectators in the stands. It’s all in Naomi’s favor.
Naomi Osaka draw: Saisai, Golubic, Bertens, Swiatek, Pliskova. Swiatek is still good, but Osaka is better on hard. We haven’t seen the Japanese woman since Roland Garros, but we saw her in Melbourne, where she proved everything.
Karolina Pliskova already in Tokyo for the Olympic Games, pojd! 🎾👊🏼 #AceQueen
(📸: KP’s Instagram) pic.twitter.com/tPA1IaeHRb
— Team Pliskova (@PliskovaSisters) July 21, 2021
But the Czech Pliskova could very well put up a fight. At Wimbledon, Karolina realized that her strengths can produce results, and noted where she needs to add. Hard courts also suit the Czech – Pliskova played on them in the US Open final. On hard courts she played five times, the score was 3:2 in favor of the Czech. It seems that she will play a very interesting semifinal. And in this match, Osaka can’t escape from the pressure.
- Gold: Ashley Barty.
- Silver: Karolina Pliskova.
- Bronze: Aryna Sabalenka.
- Fourth place: Naomi Osaka.