Serena Williams vs. Elena Dementieva
In some areas, Elena is well equipped to deal with Serena's power and send some back. I don't see Elena being overpowered in many fierce rallies. Her forehand is probably harder than Serena's, if less reliable.
However, Dementieva possesses, closely followed by Dokic and Capriati, probably the most unreliable service action in the higher echelons of women's tennis - not to mention a matching mentality. That puts her immediately on the back foot.
Serena in 2 comfortable sets.
Jennifer Capriati vs. Anastasia Myskina
Jen should be the favourite, but I just don't think she's got the edge that she had two years ago, or even of 12 months ago when she was still top 3 and leading contender to the Williams'.
If Myskina can trouble Jen from the start - and she has the game to do so - I see a shock in this match. I don't see Myskina being intimidated.
If Jen is at her best, though, she's through. But I'll go out on a limb and pick Myskina!
Justine Henin-Hardenne vs. Mary Pierce
Mary is playing devastating tennis, but these days she doesn't cover the court as well, is a few dress sizes larger than 3 years ago, and her infamous "love" streaks don't last as many matches.
Moreover, Justine's had a year of maturity since beating Lindsay in Australia. She believes in herself, knows how to break down raw power, has developed the ability to expose poor movement, and most importantly, has honed some of her own power.
That said, Mary could still come out playing blitzkreig tennis, as of old. It wouldn't last for long, even if she did.
Justine in 3 sets. 1st set to Mary.
Maria Sharapova vs. Svetlana Kuznetsova
I've yet to see Kuznetsova, so I shall look forward to doing so. She's had a quiet year, after a great latter half of 2002. She's certainly a big prospect.
But I feel if Sharapova can beat a Dokic playing near the level we would expect of her, added to her recent success on grass, Sharapova will beat Navratilova's young doubles partner in two close sets.
Sharapova in two close sets.
Lindsay Davenport vs. Shinobu Asagoe
This all depends on whether Asagoe can expose Lindsay's poor movement as SO many players are now doing, and whether she can cope with not only Lindsay's overwhelming ball speed, but also the weight of her shots. And if Lindsay's serve is on, as it has seemed to be, can she return it?
Every player has always known Lindsay's achilies heal - her lack of flexibility. Yet it is only this year that I have seen players outside the top 5 able to expose it. And when Lindsay is moved around, she doubts her shots, as has been the case throughout her career, and particularly this year.
So the bottom line is, if Asagoe can ruffle Lindsay by retrieving and counter attacking, she can actually win.
But I don't see it happening. Lindsay in two, possibly three.
Venus Williams vs. Vera Zvonareva
Vera Zvonareva is my new favourite young player. This girl has impressed me with her guts, steel, tenacity, resolve and fearlessness in a way no other of her mould has done since Aranxta Sanchez-Vicario.
In fact, I really do see Vera is many ways as being like Aranxta.
But would we have expected Sanchez-Vicario to beat an alert Venus playing near her best - as I think she will be - on grass? No.
So there's the result: two sets to love for Venus.
Silvia Farina Elia vs. Paola Suarez
This match is the least interesting (if I may say so) and could go either way. I favour Farina- Elia as on the few occasions I've seen Suarez, she's more of a heavy top spin clay courter. Silvia has more variation and better slice. In short, she'll beat Suarez at her own game with more variation. Farina is also 31. She knows this may well be her last chance to do well at a slam.
Farina-Elia in two.
Ai Sugiyama vs. Kim Clijsters
Ai has really (finally?) come of age this year after a relatively stagnant Likhovtseva come Barbara Schett-type last four years. And she hits the ball just beautifully.
I just don't think that Kim will let this one go, though. She's ready for what Ai can do after Scottsdale, and will have that little more power and athleticism.
Kim in two close, competitive sets.