2nd seed Yulia Putintseva squares off against Heather Watson in the first round of the 2023 Thailand Open on Tuesday.
The 30-year-old began 2023 by playing in an ITF event in Australia. She reached the quarterfinals with wins against top seed Kateryna Baindl and Yuriko Miyazaki, where she lost to Katie Boulter.
In the Australian Open, Watson could not progress to the main draw as she lost a qualifying match against Aliona Bolsova Zadoinov. The former British world No. 1 produced her best Grand Slam result in 2022 when she made it to the 4th round at Wimbledon. She will hope to make a good start to her campaign in the Thailand Open.
The Kazakhstani veteran played in the inaugural United Cup. She lost to Iga Swiatek and Belinda Benic in the 18-team tournament.
Putintseva went on to take part in Hobart International. The 28-year-old defeated Claire Liu and Nuria Parrizas-Diaz in the first couple of rounds to make it to the quarterfinals. Putintseva’s run ended with a loss against Anna Blinkova in straight sets. In the Australian Open, Putintseva came back from a set down to beat Sorana Cirstea. In the second round, she was comprehensively beaten by former world No. 1 Karolina Pliskova.
Head-to-Head and Prediction
Yulia Putintseva has a 2-1 lead in the head-to-head scoreline. Watson’s only win came in the qualifying stage of the 2015 Wuhan Tennis Open. Putintseva won their most recent encounter in the 2018 Australian Open in straight sets.
Prediction: Yulia Putintseva to win in three sets.
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