US Open, 🇺🇸🍎🗽🚕 R3 Preview + Prediction
🇷🇺 Ekaterina Makarova vs 🇪🇸 Carla Suarez Navarro
Ekaterina Makarova finally claimed her first career victory over Caroline Wozniacki to move into the third round in New York where she will face Carla Suarez Navarro. Makarova was seemingly on route to a straight set win over Wozniacki but was dragged into a third set where she regrouped to secure a 6-2 6-7 6-1 win. Makarova had a 0-7 head-to-head record heading into her match with Wozniacki and will need to overcome another very negative head-to-head record if she is progress any further in New York. Suarez Navarro holds a 6-2 head-to-head record over Makarova and easily accounted for the Russian earlier this year in Eastbourne. Makarova is in much better form heading into this match and despite the negative record, she does have the game to really trouble the Spaniard.
Makarova is one of the form players left in the draw and one of the most dangerous. Makarova, a former semi-finalist in New York started her 2017 campaign with an easy win over Mona Barthel before claiming a hard-fought three set win over Caroline Wozniacki. Suarez Navarro also had to work hard for her second round victory. Suarez Navarro looked down and out against Mirjana Lucic-Baroni when the Croatian served for the match in the second set, however Lucic-Baroni faltered and Suarez Navarro capitalized to secure a 4-6 7-6 6-2 win.
As mentioned above, Suarez Navarro holds a 6-2 record over Makarova. Their most recent match was earlier this year on grass in Eastbourne where Suarez Navarro won 6-3 6-1. Suarez Navarro has won the last four matches between the pair, with wins on all three different surfaces. Makarova proved in the previous round that a negative record can be overcome and I think she will continue that trend here. Makarova is in great form and will have received a huge confidence boost after her win over Wozniacki. Makarova can employ similar tactics and mindset here to overpower Suarez Navarro in a controlled manner. If Makarova can remain focused and execute her game she should ultimately be too strong for a slightly vulnerable Suarez Navarro.