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Wozniacki vs Buzarnescu WTA Charleston live streaming, preview and tips - Wozniacki targets first quarter-final of 2019

Andrew Hendrie in WTA Tour 4 Apr 2019
  • Caroline Wozniacki vs Mihaela Buzarnescu is live from Charleston around 2.00pm local time on Thursday (7.00pm GMT)
  • Wozniacki has won both of their previous encounters in straight sets
Caroline Wozniacki (PA Images)

Caroline Wozniacki attempts to make her first quarter-final of the season when she takes on former top 20 player Mihaela Buzarnescu in Charleston on Thursday.

(geo restrictions apply; funded account required or to have placed a bet in the last 24 hours to qualify)

Former Volvo Car Open champion Caroline Wozniacki aims for her maiden quarter-final of 2019 on Thursday in Charleston against Mihaela Buzarnescu.

Arriving in Charleston with an underwhelming 5-4 record for the season so far, Wozniacki was tasked with a tough opening match against clay-court specialist Laura Siegemund - but she handled it with aplomb. Siegemund threw all of her trademark variety and guile at Wozniacki, but the Dane was more than up to the challenge, needing just 90 minutes to register a 6-2 6-2 scoreline, breaking five as she claimed her second win over the German in 2019, repeating her Auckland triumph from her first match of the year.

“She definitely loves playing on clay, so I knew it was going to be tough," Wozniacki said after the match. "She kind of throws the players a little bit off because she'll play a short ball and then she'll play down into your feet and then she'll play a drop shot and mix it up.
"It's really difficult. From the outside sometimes, you're like, 'Okay, I got it,' and you know what to do, but when you're out there, it's tricky because you don't get two of the same balls and you have to be ready for anything."

Wozniacki experienced a roller-coaster season last year - one one hand, she landed the biggest moment of her career as she won her first Grand Slam title at the Australian Open and returned to No. 1, while she also won significant titles on the grass of Eastbourne and at the Premier Mandatory China Open in Beijing. However, she also struggled with her consistency throughout the season, with Wozniacki later revealing she was dealing with symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, which is a chronic inflammatory disorder affecting many joints, including those in the hands and feet. Wozniacki appeared to be managing the problem as she ended 2018 in encouraging fashion, winning the aforementioned title in Beijing and playing well enough at the WTA Finals Singapore, but she hasn’t had a great start to 2019, failing to make a quarter-final as she lost early at Auckland, the Australian Open, Indian Wells and Miami, while she also suffered from a viral illness that caused her to pull out of Doha and Dubai.

A champion in Charleston all the way back in 2011 when she beat Elena Vesnina in the final, can Wozniacki find her feet on the green clay again and make that first quarter-final of the season on Thursday?


She faces junior rival Mihaela Buzarnescu for a chance to do just that. Buzarnescu was one of the WTA’s biggest improvers over the last couple of years and a true late-bloomer, but unfortunately an ankle injury has halted her rise up the rankings as the Romanian went winless from August to February of this year, finally snapping an 11-match losing streak when she beat Daria Gavrilova in the opening round of Acapulco, before losing to rising star Bianca Andreescu. Buzarnescu would lose to Gavrilova in the opening round of Indian Wells and go down to Alize Cornet in the first round of Miami, but she’s put together back-to-back wins for the first time in Charleston this week since suffering that ankle injury in Canada last year, defeating Magdalena Frech and Lauren Davis to make the Round of 16.

Buzarnescu was ranked outside the top 500 at the beginning of 2017 but found herself inside the top 20 in July of last year after winning her maiden WTA title in San Jose when she beat Maria Sakkari in the final. The Romanian began her rise by winning seven ITF titles and reaching the semi-finals of Linz to end the 2017 season, but she took her game to new heights across the first half of 2018, finishing runner-up in Hobart and Prague, making the fourth round of the French Open (beating fourth seed Elina Svitolina along the way), reaching the semi-finals in Strasbourg, Birmingham (where she beat Svitolina again) and Bucharest and the third round of Wimbledon. As mentioned, her ankle injury stunted her rise at the end of 2018, but Buzarnescu is now seemingly back to full fitness and appears ready to pick up from where she left off.

Wozniacki has won both of their previous meetings in straight sets, and I think a similar result is on the cards in Charleston. Wozniacki’s game matches up well to the tricky and unorthodox Buzarnescu, and in a way, is a similar test to what Siegemund presented. If she can reproduce that sort of performance, Wozniacki should be too steady and too consistent for Buzarnescu, who will have to be more aggressive than usual and generally play her best match in six months in order to prevail.


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Wozniacki vs Buzarnescu WTA Charleston live streaming, preview and tips - Wozniacki targets first quarter-final of 2019

Caroline Wozniacki attempts to make her first quarter-final of the season when she takes on former top 20 player Mihaela Buzarnescu in Charleston on Thursday.

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