Hollywoodbets Sports Blog: 2020 WTA Tour: Lyon Open

2020 WTA Tour: Lyon Open

Tennis player holds racquet

The round of 32 takes center stage at the Lyon Open with Damien Kayat previewing the respective matchups between Daria Kasatkina and Pauline Parmentier as well as 
Sofia Kenin and Vitalia Diatchenko.

2020 WTA Tour  | WTA International | Monterrey Open
Club Sonoma, Hard Outdoor
Selected Round of 32 Matches 

Daria Kasatkina (2/9) 
Pauline Parmentier (26/10)
The plight of Daria Kasatkina over the last few years has been one of the more depressing sub-plots on the WTA Tour over the last few years. Kasatkina is a two-time WTA Tour winner who stood on the pinnacle of the women’s game for a moment in 2018. She finished runner-up at the 2018 Indian Wells Final to Naomi Osaka. Many felt that would propel both to the top of the women’s game for some time: they were right about Osaka. But 2019 saw her absolutely plummet down the world rankings: she ended the year with a win-loss record of 12-21.  The big-hitting Russian just started to hit too many unforced errors in her matches. She hasn’t exactly hit the ground running this year and her seventh seed is perhaps slightly indicative of the depth of this new event. But Kasatkina has a career 26-13 career win-loss record on indoor hardcourts.

Pauline Parmentier is your prototypical journeywoman, generally operating in these fringe events to get by.  Having said that, she has won four WTA titles, including two as recently as 2018: she won in Istanbul and the Tourni de Quebec. But last year- much like that of Daria Kasatkina- was pretty much a wash for Parmentier.  She reached the quarterfinals in Tashkent and the WTA 125K New Haven events. Her form since last year’s Indian Wells has been poor: she has a win-loss record of 14-28. That includes a host of first-round losses in satellite events. She has a win-loss 2020 record of 1-4, and I firmly believe that we could be becoming close to the end of the Frenchwoman’s career.

This will be their second-ever meeting. Daria Kasatkina won their only meeting in straight sets in Wuhan. I really think that Daria Kasatkina has the game to get back on the right track- much like Jelena Ostapenko. She just recently lost to Garbine Muguruza in three sets in Qatar. Parmentier shouldn’t be able to live with her best tennis and will lose in straight sets.  Kasatkina in straight sets at 9/20.      

Sofia Kenin (1/4) 
Vitalia Diatchenko (51/20)
It’s been an interesting year for newly minted Grand Slam Champion Sofia Kenin. Much like Sharapova, Kenin is of Russian descent and has converted to American status. She rose to prominence last year with three WTA titles. However, it was her performance towards the end of the year in premier events that really propelled her up the rankings. Back-to-back semi-finals in Cincinnati and Canada highlighted her absolute potential on hard surfaces. She entered the Aussie Open in subdued form but defied expectations with a stellar Grand Slam win. But since then she has lost back-to-back first-round defeats in Qatar and Dubai. So Kenin certainly needs a victory to regain some credibility in this post-Grand Slam malaise.  She enters this event as the top seed and needs to regain some traction if she doesn’t want to become the next Ostapenko on tour.

Kenin will be coming up against a Russian who still happens to be Russian. Vitalia Diatchenko is a 29-year-old Russian who has found an extremely comfortable niche in the lower echelons of women’s tennis: better to rule in hell than serve in heaven type of thing. But seriously, Diatchenko absolutely dominated the ITF circuit last year, winning six titles- three of which were on indoor hardcourts. Her win-loss record on indoor hard surfaces last season was a staggering 34-11. Sure, most of these victories came in less grandiose events.  But there is something to be said for that type of winning mentality, especially when she enters the ring with a player in slightly static mode.

This will be the second meeting between these two.  Diatchenko actually won their one and only encounter at the 2018 Wimbledon Championships: she won that match in straight sets. So this could represent yet another banana peel for Aussie Open Champion Sofia Kenin. There could be some value in Kenin winning this match in three sets at 28/10.  

Written by Damien Kayat for Hollywoodbets

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