10th seed Elena Rybakina faces 21st seed Paula Badosa in a blockbuster clash in the round of 32 of the 2023 Indian Wells on Monday.
The Kazakhstani No. 1 played some scintillating tennis in the Australian Open, reaching her second Grand Slam final. However, her results have not been similar in the tournaments she played on either side of the Australian Open.
The hard-hitting Rybakina received a bye into the second round of Indian Wells. She faced 2020 Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin. Rybakina had to dig deep to win the match in two competitive sets 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (7-5). She smashed 6 aces in the encounter but also committed 7 double faults. The 23-year-old had an impressive win percentage of 80 on the first serve.
The Spanish star played really well last year in Indian Wells and managed to reach the semifinals. In 2021, she went on to win the title. So Badosa has a fine record in Indian Wells and is one of the contenders. However, her recent form is not very encouraging. She suffered a right thigh injury during the United Cup and it forced her to skip the Australian Open. Badosa returned to action in the Qatar Open but was ousted in the round of 32. She couldn’t get past the first round in Dubai.
The former world No. 2 began her campaign in Indian Wells against compatriot Nura Parrizas-Diaz in the round of 64. Badosa won the match 6-2, 7-5. She converted 6 out of 12 break points to secure her first win since the quarter-final victory in the Adelaide International 2 against Beatriz Haddad Maia.
Head-to-Head and Prediction
The head-to-head scoreline currently stands at 4-1 in favor of Paula Badosa. She won their most recent encounter in the round of 16 of the 2022 Stuttgart Open 6-2, 4-6, 7-6.
Prediction: Elena Rybakina to win in three sets.
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