Heather Watson in the first round of the Australian Open 2020, Melbourne
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 22: Heather Watson of Great Britain plays a backhand during her Women's Singles first round match against Karolina Pliskova of Czech Republic on day three of the 2020 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 22, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Mike Owen/Getty Images)

Tennis | WTA Western & Southern Open 2020 | Watson faces Pera in opener

  • Heather Watson v Bernarda Pera | First Meeting
  • Watson yet to capitalise on her Battle of the Brits form
NEW YORK, USA – Heather Watson is the first of the British women off the blocks at the Western & Southern Open, in New York.


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Heather Watson v Bernarda Pera | First Meeting

The British No. 2 Heather Watson may have had a first-round exit in Lexington, but she felt confident that she would be able to translate the good form she showed in the Battle of the Brits Team Tennis as the domestic restart in the UK came to a close.


READ MORE | Tennis | WTA Lexington 2020 | Heart scare for Konta and delay woes for Watson as they exit in first round

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Bernarda Pera spent 2018 tormenting British No. 1 Johanna Konta, meeting her three times that year, and coming out 2-1 in their head to head, and now she gets to face Watson.

The big-hitting leftie is probably best described as a baseliner who won’t pass up on her chances to finish up her points. She plays aggressively and tends to favour her forehand, so Watson will need to up her intensity.

The Brit incorporated a lot more aggression to her own game, but still has great defence and can switch with ease between the two, and perhaps marginally has the edge on her court movement.

Pera put in some hours on World Team Tennis ahead of her own first round exit in Lexington, so both arguably come in with some solid match wins under their belt.

Watson returned to her base in Bradenton to prepare after her traumatic arrival in the US, so expect a battle as she bids to get her campaign underway.

Prediction: Watson in three sets.

Watson & Pera are scheduled first on Court 7, at 11am (4pm BST).


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