Last year’s Australian Open runner-up Petra Kvitova continues her campaign on Wednesday when she meets Spanish newcomer Paula Badosa in the second round.
Petra Kvitova ?? vs Paula Badosa ?? Match Info
Date: Wednesday January 22
Tournament: Australian Open R2
Court: Rod Laver Arena
Time: 11.00am local time (12.00am GMT)
Petra Kvitova vs Paula Badosa Head-to-Head
Petra Kvitova vs Paula Badosa Match Preview
Both Kvitova and Badosa registered identical and dominant 6-1 6-0 victories in their respective Australian Open first rounds on Monday – who maintains their momentum and comes out on top to reach the third round on Wednesday?
Kvitova was in intimidating form to launch her title quest on Monday, swatting aside countrywoman Katerina Siniakova in fearsome fashion. Playing under the roof due to rain, Kvitova was right at home as she dropped just one game in a statement performance, firing 16 winners and dishing out six aces, later describing it as perhaps the best opening round she’s ever played at a major.
“Definitely is one of the best [Grand Slam first rounds I’ve ever played],” Kvitova told press afterwards. She added, “Of course that I felt nervous before the match, in the start of the match.
“But in those three games I think I got a little bit more calmer, more free. Of course with the break it’s a little bit better always.”
Kvitova was in similar form to what she displayed at this time last year, when she defeated Ashleigh Barty for the Sydney International title before storming into the Australian Open final for her first Grand Slam final outside of Wimbledon. Naomi Osaka proved too strong in three sets that day, but if Kvitova can produce the level of tennis she did in the opening round, she will put herself right in the conversation for the title again.
The former World No. 2 started the 2020 season with a semi-final showing at the Brisbane International, going down to Madison Keys, and then decided to withdraw from Adelaide due to fatigue. That decision seems to have been a smart one, judging by how fresh Kvitova looked against Siniakova. Can she keep the ball rolling against someone she’s never faced before in the second round?
Badosa scored her first ever Grand Slam win with an equally as dominant 6-1 6-0 romp of Johanna Larsson on Monday – however, facing Kvitova will prove to be a massive step up in class.
The Spaniard played her first WTA match all the way back in 2015 when she was handed a wildcard into the Miami Open as a 17-year-old, which was due to her IMG connections. Badosa did very well to make the third round and also won the junior French Open title that same year, but it wasn’t until 2019 that she was able to make her top 100 debut after reaching the semi-finals in Palermo and quarter-finals in Seoul.
Born in New York but calling Barcelona in Spain home, Badosa ended 2019 with some strong showings on the ITF circuit, winning a title and finishing runner-up in Makinohara, Japan, ending the season at No. 97 in the world. Badosa failed to qualify in Auckland to launch 2020, but she was in brilliant form in dropping just one game in her Australian Open first round and will take plenty of confidence from that performance into her showdown with Kvitova on Wednesday.
Petra Kvitova vs Paula Badosa Prediction
It will be the first career meeting between the pair and Badosa has absolutely nothing to lose against last year’s runner-up and a current top 10 star. In saying that, I’m not sure what Badosa will be able to do if Kvitova plays like she did in her opening round. The Spaniard doesn’t really have the firepower to make life difficult for a zoned-in Kvitova, so if the Czech is playing at a high level, she will most likely coast into the second round.