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Karolina Pliskova vs Iga Swiatek: Rome Masters Finals: Prediction | Preview | Stats

Ninth seed Karolina Pliskova sets up an intriguing encounter against the 15th seed Iga Swiatek in the finals of the Rome Masters.

Karolina Pliskova vs Iga Swiatek: Rome Masters Preview

Karolina Pliskova ousted the dangerous Petra Martic in a thrilling three-setter in the semifinals. The Czech was unstoppable in the first set pounding 13 winners to take it 6-1. However, the Croatian, Martic bounced back strongly with her powerful forehand to grab the second set 6-3. 

The former World number 1, Pliskova broke Petra's serve two times in the deciding set and kept her unforced errors minimum to storm into the finals. It was also the Czech's first win against Martic after 3 matches on clay.

Karolina claimed 66.7% of her first-serve points, hit 8 aces, pounded a whopping 37 winners, and also saved 7 out of 10 breakpoints.

"I think the first and third set, they were super solid for me, playing the game I want to play, not really going for crazy shots, quite a good serve today, I think it was a good match," said Karolina Pliskova after edging past Martic in the semis.

On the other hand, Iga Swiatek reached the finals of the WTA-1000 tournament with two straight-set victories on the same day. The Pole upset the fifth-seeded and two-time Rome champion Elina Svitolina 6-2 7-5. The 19-year-old notched up a convincing 7-6(3) 6-3 victory against the American teen sensation Cori Gauff in the semis.

Overall, the French Open 2020 champion clinched 66.7% of points on her first serve, fired 25 winners,  and also saved 4 out of 6 breakpoints.

Karolina Pliskova vs Iga Swiatek: Head to Head Record

This is the first meeting between Pliskova and Swiatek on the WTA Tour. The Czech is playing her third Rome Masters final in a row (2019- Champion and 2020 - Runner-up). Swiatek is featuring in her first WTA-1000 tournament final in her career. Swiatek beat Pliskova in three sets in the Tipsport Elite Trophy Exhibition tournament in 2020. 

Pliskova vs Swiatek: Rome Masters: Match Timing

The 2021 Rome Masters Final match between Karolina Pliskova and Iga Swiatek starts at 2:30 pm Central European Summer Time (CEST).

Karolina Pliskova vs Iga Swiatek: Rome Masters: Key Insights

  • Karolina Pliskova is featuring in her first final of this season.
  • Swiatek will break into the top 10 of the WTA rankings if she beats Pliskova in the finals.
  • Pliskova has an impressive 14-5 win-loss record in Rome.
  • Swiatek is targetting her second WTA singles title in 2021 after winning the Adelaide Open in February.
  • If Pliskova wins against Swiatek in the finals, she would clinch her 17th WTA singles title.
  • The win-loss record of Swiatek and Pliskova this year is 13-5 and 10-8 respectively.

Karolina Pliskova vs Iga Swiatek: Rome Masters Game Analysis

Pliskova is a big server and can grab a lot of free points by firing aces. Having played two consecutive three-setters in the quarters vs Jelena Ostapenko and the semis vs Martic, the Czech would be quite exhausted.

However, having retired hurt in the finals of the Rome Masters last year against Simona Halep, the ex-World number 1 would leave no stone unturned to bag the coveted trophy. 

In contrast, Swiatek has won her last two matches in straight sets each and has featured in only one three-setter in the tournament (against Barbora Krejcikova in the pre-quarterfinals). But, the Pole will have to quickly recover for the big match after playing her quarterfinals and semifinals on the same day.

The French Open 2020 winner is having a dream run in Rome after never winning a main draw match before in her career. The Polish teen is a big-hitter and also displayed a unique combo of a powerful first-serve followed by a delicate tweener to take a point against Gauff in the semis.

Iga Swiatek has targeted her returns to the weak backhand of her opponents forcing them to commit unforced errors. Playing in her favorite tournament, it would be hard to go against Karolina Pliskova's chances as she knows the conditions really well in the Italian capital. The Czech has been impressive in the big moments (saved 3 match points against Ostapenko in the quarters). 

Pliskova will be a bit concerned with her 9 double faults and unforced error count of 31 against Martic in the semis. She cannot afford to repeat the number against a consistent returner like Swiatek.

Both Pliskova and Swiatek have flamboyant shot-making skills. Iga Swiatek will be looking to exploit Pliskova's weak movement on clay. Karolina's better first serve winning percentage and ruthless groundstrokes give her a slight edge against the Pole. 

Between the two aggressive baseliners, the player who finishes off points at the net and slides well during the long rallies will emerge as the winner. Karolina Pliskova will be the favourite for the title given her superior record in the eternal city.

Prediction - Karolina Pliskova to win in three sets against Iga Swiatek in the Final tie and win the Rome Masters 2021

Featured Image Credits - Getty Images

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