WTA Toronto: Semi Final Predictions


WTA Toronto: Can Bencic outwit Williams?

The semi finals have been decided at the Roger’s Cup in Toronto, Canada. Two of the four players I predicted at the beginning of the week have reached this stage. Find out who I predicted here.

Here’s a look at the semi finals and who I think will reach the final.


(1/1) Serena Williams vs (20/-) Belinda Bencic

Williams is now 43-1 for the year and hasn’t lost since Madrid in May. The 33 year old is into her seventh semi final of the year and has dropped just the one set. That came against Flavia Pennetta in the second round, when Williams trailed by a set and a break. Understandably sluggish to begin with considering her lack of recent match play, Williams pulled away after smashing her racket early in the second set to win 26 63 60 and hasn’t looked back since. The American showed no signs of her recent elbow injury in brushing aside (16) Andrea Petkovic 63 62 and Roberta Vinci 64 63 as she looks to win her fourth title in Toronto.

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Bencic has continued to kick on from a breakthrough grass court season. The Swiss won the title at Eastbourne and made the fourth round at Wimbledon. Having just broken the top 20, the 18 year old will be in high spirits considering this is her 3rd semi final in the past three months and the biggest to date in her career. As I predicted she would, Bencic carved her way through an exceptionally difficult draw. In her debut here, she’s defeated Eugenie Bouchard 60 57 62, (5/4) Caroline Wozniacki 75 75, Sabine Lisicki 61 16 76(3) and (6/5) Ana Ivanovic 64 62.

Williams thrashed Bencic in their only previous meeting, 62 61 on the clay in Madrid last year. Needless to say, Bencic is a different player these days but will have her work cut out to curb Serena’s power.

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Mentored by Martina Hingis, Bencic will surely look to try and use the pace against her opponent and her tactical wiles to outwit Williams. Nevertheless, I think her own serve will come under fire and at this point in time, it’s almost impossible to see Williams being beaten.

Prediction: Serena Williams

(3/2) Simona Halep vs (17/15) Sara Errani

Halep is back! After a terrible summer, it seems that a months rest and the hard courts have revived the Romanian. Playing this event for the first time in three years, Halep advanced beyond the second round for the first time. The 23 year old moves into her seventh semi final of the year behind a physically demanding set of matches. After beating Jelena Jankovic, Halep was forced to battle against last week’s Stanford champion, (11/13) Angelique Kerber, winning 63 57 64. Then she recovered from the worst possible start to edge resurgent (14/6) Agnieszka Radwanska 06 63 61.

Errani has somehow found her way into her biggest hard court semi final since the 2012 US Open. The Italian has reached four other semi finals this year, including at her past couple of events, but all at the smaller International level. Therefore, the fact that the 28 year old has bettered her quarter final showing here from two years ago is all the more surprising. After two three setters against Kristina Mladenovic and Madison Brengle, Errani looked like her former top 5 self in lulling Victoria Azarenka into countless errors. Using drop shots and lobs to perfection, Errani won 75 63 for only her second win in nine matches against the Belarusian. She then defeated the qualifier, Lesia Tsurenko 64 64 in the quarter finals.

Halep leads Errani 2-1 in their head to head. The two last met on the clay in Stuttgart this year, where Halep won a break riddled match 64 64. The pair are tied at 1-1 on hard courts. Both of these were amazingly one sided, Halep winning 62 60 in Doha 2014 and Errani winning 61 60 in Miami 2013! I think we can safely say it won’t be that easy this time for either player.

I think that both players will be feeling fatigued but Halep’s extra pop on her serve and off the ground should put her in good stead.

Prediction: Simona Halep 

Next: WTA Toronto: Preview & Predictions

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