Italian Open 2021: Ashleigh Barty vs Coco Gauff Preview; Head-to-Head and Prediction

Published 05/13/2021, 4:47 PM EDT
Tennis – WTA 500 – Stuttgart Open – Porsche-Arena, Stuttgart, Germany – April 25, 2021 Australia’s Ashleigh Barty celebrates with the trophy after winning the Final against Belarus’ Aryna Sabalenka Pool via REUTERS/Marijan Murat


World number one Ashleigh Barty, who is having a dream run on the European clay-court swing this year, will face the young American talent Coco Gauff in the quarter-finals at the Italian Open.

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The Australian player has won three titles this year so far and defeated the likes of Petra Kvitova, Elina Svitolina, Aryna Sabalenka, Jelena Ostapenko, Iga Swiatek, etc. Also, Barty crossed 10,000 ranking points and proved that she is deservedly the best player in the world.

Ashleigh Barty of Australia celebrates winning match point during her Women’s Singles first round match against Lesia Tsurenko of Ukraine on day one of the 2020 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 20, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

On the other hand, the young American star Coco Gauff has been consistently performing against top players this year. Her victory against Madrid Open Champion Aryna Sabalenka today is an example to her rising prowess in the sport.

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Italian Open 2021: Ashleigh Barty vs Coco Gauff Preview

Barty’s game on clay proves to be one of the best in the world right now. She had a 16-match clay court winning streak before it was halted by Sabalenka at the Mutua Madrid Open last week.

The 2019 French Open winner uses her slice backhand to a good effect on the red dirt. Also, the Aussie is a master tactician on-court with an all-round game to thrash the opponents.

Coming to Coco Gauff, it has become evident with her clay-court performances this year that she would like to take her chances and play aggressive despite the surface. Her incredible movement and shot-making indicate that the youngster is not far away from winning her firs title on the WTA tour.

Head-to-Head

This quarter-final matchup marks their first meeting on the women’s tour.

Italian Open 2021: Ashleigh Barty vs Coco Gauff Prediction

Both Ash Barty and Coco Gauff have an all-round game that suits all surfaces. While the Australian has a defensive game style and forces opponents to make errors, Gauff has an aggressive mind set and likes to attack right from the start.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 20: Coco Gauff of the United States of America plays a backhand during her Women’s Singles first round match against Venus Williams of the United States of America on day one of the 2020 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 20, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

However, the American should be wary of Barty’s intelligence on-court as she never backs down from a lengthy rally and tries to stay in the point by returning every ball to her opponent.

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On account of their first meeting, it will be interesting to see how Barty responds to the offensive game style of Gauff. If the American can survive in long baseline exchanges like she did against Sabalenka today, it will make life difficult for the Aussie.

But, Barty’s experience in playing aggressive players like Iga Swiatek might help in tackling the American’s game tomorrow. An enthralling contest gets underway tomorrow in Rome with Ash Barty being the favorite.

Final Prediction: Ashleigh Barty to win in three sets

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Sagar Ashtakoula

384 articles

Sagar Ashtakoula is a tennis writer at EssentiallySports. He has been following the sport since 2007. Having developed an interest in creating content, he mixed his passion for writing with his love for tennis for 2 years at SportsKeeda before joining the tennis team at EssentiallySports.

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