Re: The Amazing and Remarkable Monica Niculescu
WTA Estoril, Main Draw:
(5) Mattek-Sands vs. Niculescu
Qualifier vs. Oudin
Zhang vs. Dellacqua
Voracova vs. (2) Gajdosova
Don't know what to think about it...
According to the ranking positions, BMS is one of the big favourites to win here, but it will be her first match on clay this season while Monica has already played some close matches in singles and doubles.
Further, Bethanie had to pull out from Fed Cup due to an injury and won't be at 100% here!
Let's see what Moni can do!
Bethanie did play on green clay in Charleston but yeah, I'm also more hopeful about this match than I was about the match against Arruabarrena-Vecino. I think Monica will be more ready this week and the circumstances do seem much more favourable for getting at least one win than they were in Marbella.
The funny thing about trying to guess how Monica will do from one week to the next, something that is never easy, is that because she does have such an unusual game it doesn't really work very well to go by rankings with Monica. Players don't face someone like Monica regularly and some players find her style very hard to cope with, and in all honestly others don't or at least not as much. And sometimes she faces higher ranked players who don't cope with her game very well and sometimes she faces lower ranked players who do. Monica will probably never beat Flavia Pennetta unless Flavia isn't fit, likewise Azarenka. Whereas Dulko, Bacsinzsky, Bychkova and Keothavong will always be opponents that Monica will fancy her chances against.
Monica has never faced Mattek-Sands before so we have no telling how Beth will tackle Monica's game. So this really is a hard one to call. Beth is a pretty decent player though so I guess one has to make her the favourite to win this but I'd still give Monica at least a 4 out of 10 shot at this one, maybe even 4 1/2.