Iga Swiatek signs autographs at the J&T Banka Ostrava Open 2021
Fixture: (2) Iga Swiatek vs Petra Martic
Date: 8 October 2021
Tournament: BNP Paribas Open
Round: Second round (Round of 64)
Venue: Indian Wells, USA
Category: WTA 1000
Prize money: $8,761,725
Live telecast: USA – Tennis Channel & ESPN | UK – Amazon Prime Video
Iga Swiatek vs Petra Martic preview
After winning the French Open last year, Swiatek has put up consistent performances in 2021 too. The Pole has amassed a 33-12 win-loss record for the season, which includes two titles – Adelaide and Rome.
However, a semifinal loss at her last tournament (Ostrava) has seen Swiatek drop to seventh in the Race to the WTA Finals. The World No. 4 will be keen to bounce back with a strong showing in Indian Wells and thus improve her chances of qualifying to the year-ending championships for the first time in her career.
Petra Martic in action at the 2021 US Open
Petra Martic, meanwhile, has been struggling throughout the season. In 19 tournaments this year, the Croat has made the quarterfinals or better just thrice.
In fact, Martic has suffered a first-round defeat in three of her last four tournaments. But the 30-year-old showed intent in a resounding 6-4, 6-4 first-round win over 19-year-old Katie Volynets on Wednesday.
The strong performance should stand Martic in good stead ahead of a tough second-round clash with Swiatek.
Iga Swiatek vs Petra Martic head-to-head
Iga Swiatek and Petra Martic have never squared off on the tour before, so their head-to-head currently stands at a 0-0 deadlock.
Iga Swiatek vs Petra Martic prediction
Iga Swiatek serving during the J&T Banka Ostrava Open 2021
Both players are known for their serve and aggressive style of play. Petra Martic has more variety out of the two, and would look to incorporate her slice-and-dropshot combination to throw Iga Swiatek off her rhythm.
However, the Croat isn’t the most consistent of servers. In her first-round match against Volynets, Martic produced six aces but those were offset by seven double faults.
Her return isn’t one of the strongest elements of her game either, and she could find it difficult to make inroads into Swiatek’s serve.
Martic has also been crumbling under pressure lately, losing several matches from winning positions. A repeat of that could spell doom against a player like Swiatek, who has been striking the ball well throughout the year and will arrive into this match with a lot of confidence.
Prediction: Iga Swiatek to win in straight sets.