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Putintseva vs Zidansek tennis live streaming, preview and predictions – Will it be third time lucky for Putintseva in Nuremberg?

Hannah Wilks in WTA Tour 24 May 2019
  • Yulia Putintseva faces Tamara Zidansek in the final of the Nurnberger Versicherungscup
  • Putintseva vs Zidansek is live from Nurnberg on Saturday at 1.30pm local/12.30pm BST
Yulia Putintseva (PA Sport)

Will it be Yulia Putintseva or Tamara Zidansek who captures a first WTA Tour title in Nurnberg on Saturday?

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Tamara Zidansek beat Yulia Putintseva in their only previous meeting, which came last month – can she do it again in the final of the Nurnberger Versicherungscup on Saturday?

This will be Zidansek’s first appearance in a WTA Tour-level final, but it will be the more experienced Putintseva’s third attempt to capture her first WTA Tour trophy after recording runner-up finishes to Kristina Mladenovic at the Premier-level St Petersburg Ladies Trophy in 2017 and Wang Qiang in Guangzhou last autumn.

Yulia Putintseva (PA Sport)
Now 24, the 5’4” Putintseva has always had some of her best results on clay, having made the quarterfinals of the French Open in 2016 and again in 2018 – having played the Nurnberger Versicherungscup the previous week on both occasions.

Putintseva will be hoping to duplicate the feat at this year’s French Open, having landed in the quarter of the draw bracketed by Sloane Stephens and Kiki Bertens and due to face Rebecca Peterson in the first round, but first she has unfinished business in Nurnberg.

On the brink of dropping out of the top 100 before her French Open quarterfinal run last summer, Putintseva was back inside the top 50 by the end of 2018 and comes into Nurnberg ranked world no. 39, not far off being seeded at majors, although her ranking will take a significant hit if she fails to defend her Roland Garros quarterfinal points.

A quarterfinalist in Sydney as a qualifier to start the year, where she beat Sloane Stephens, Putintseva also scored victories over Belinda Bencic and Barbora Strycova to make the round of 16 at the Miami Open and won back-to-back matches in Madrid to make the last 16 before falling to Ashleigh Barty. 

It’s been a dramatic run for Putintseva in Nurnberg (not that she knows any other kind): After beating Dalila Jakupovic (via retirement) and Mona Barthel to make the quarterfinals, she won what ended up being the longest WTA Tour match of the year so far against Anna-Lena Friedsam in the last eight, a 7-5, 6-7(5), 7-6(2) win which took three hours and 21 minutes. However the diminutive Kazakh didn’t show any ill after-effects from that match when she took the court on Friday, briskly avenging a former quarterfinal defeat to Sorana Cirstea for a 6-4, 7-5 victory to reach her third WTA Tour final.

Will this be where Putintseva claims her first title? Not if the rapidly rising Tamara Zidansek has anything to say about it.

Now 21 years old, Zidansek first came to my attention last summer when she beat Daria Kasatkina and Laura Siegemund to reach the semifinals of the Moscow International on post-Wimbledon clay, a tournament which served as a breakthrough for several young stars with Anastasia Potapova, who ended Zidansek’s run, facing Olga Danilovic in the final. 

Tamara Zidansek (PA Sports)
Zidansek broke into the top 150 after winning three ITF titles in the first half of 2018 and went on to claim the WTA 125k Series title in Bol to rise into the top 100 for the first time before making the aforementioned semifinal in Moscow. The Slovenian had picked up a fourth ITF title by the end of the season to start 2019 ranked world no. 79 and rose to a career-high ranking of world no. 65 in April after having made the second round of the Australian Open and a second WTA Tour semifinal on hard courts in Hua Hin.

A quarterfinalist in Bogota in April, Zidansek made the second round in Rabat – beating Putintseva herself – and successfully qualified in Rome, although she did not win a match there. The Slovenian player has come unscathed through a tough draw in Nurnberg, beating Misaki Doi, third seed Ajla Tomljanovic, Veronika Kudermetova and second seed Katerina Siniakova to reach her first WTA Tour final.

‘I feel fantastic,’ Zidansek said afterwards. ‘I’ve been working hard to be where I am, and I’m aiming even higher. But right now I feel really good about the final tomorrow, and I’m looking forward to it.’

This will be the second meeting between Putintseva and Zidansek after the latter upset the former in Rabat, 3-6, 6-4, 6-3. Saturday’s Nurnberg final should be similarly hard-fought, as any match with Putintseva tends to be, and certainly the diminutive Kazakh will leave no stone unturned in order to secure victory. I have a lot of time for Zidansek, who I think has a bright future; she keeps her head and her backhand is impressive. Putintseva has been struggling to stay aggressive and keep going for her shots consistently, and I think she may be surprised by the lower-ranked player in Saturday’s final. 

Putintseva vs Zidansek Nurnberger Versicherungscup tennis is live from Nurnberg on Saturday at 1.30pm local/12.30pm BST


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Putintseva vs Zidansek tennis live streaming, preview and predictions – Will it be third time lucky for Putintseva in Nuremberg?

Yulia Putintseva vs Tamara Zidansek live streaming, preview and predictions for the Nurnberger Versicherungscup final on Saturday 25 May: Putintseva faces rising Slovenian in Nuremberg with both women aiming to capture their first WTA Tour title

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