The final of the 2014 Coupe Rogers is all set for Sunday at the Uniprix Stadium between Venus Williams and Agnieszka Radwanska.
We managed to get one winner over the line yesterday when Radwanska edged past Kate Makarova in two tie breaks, but the all-Williams clash ended in a predictably unpredictable win for older sister Venus in three sets.
Agnieszka Radwanska vs Venus Williams - Live on Unibet TV
This ninth meeting between Venus and Aga, which begins at around 18:00 UK time (1pm local) will be their first since the 2012 French Open and first on a hard court since Miami the same season.
Aga has been made the slight favourite for this one at 1.85 and she’ll be looking for her third straight win over Venus in a series that the American leads 5-3 currently – all bar one of which have ended in straight sets.
Their only three set clash came in Miami back in 2009 and once again this will largely be about how Venus plays and how well or otherwise she serves.
I talked yesterday about how poor the Venus first serve percentage had been and how she had to up that to beat her sister and she managed to achieve that, but only just.
Her set one percentage increased to 53, but she’ll need to serve well again versus Aga, who is a decent returner, and of course the Radwanska serve will come under heavy pressure today too.
The Pole perhaps should have been beaten by Makarova yesterday, but the Russian was tired, as I had thought, and wasn’t quite able to step up at the key moments.
It’s going to be hot and sunny in Montreal today and this is another tough one to try and call due to Williams having played four three setters already this week and perhaps it’ll catch up with her today.
I expect though, that Venus will be very much up for this and she can always pull out of Cincy next week if she feels that her body has had enough for the time being.
It’s an easy match-up to discuss, with Venus certain to go all-out in attack and try and hit Aga off the court and how many times Williams can find the lines will be the likely deciding factor today.
Makarova couldn’t quite do it yesterday and failed at the key moments – perhaps in part to do with fatigue – and that could well happen again today, depending on the condition of Williams, but the value here looks to lie with the latter.
She’ll know she has very few of these big matches left and perhaps her desire to end her career on a high will override the likely fatigue today.
As for Aga, she has lost three of her last four Premier finals and last won one on hard in Miami back in 2012 and whatever happens today she’s had a timely boost ahead of the US Open after a poor run of form.
The 1.95 on Williams, who is looking for her second Premier title of the season, looks the best bet here.
Back Williams to beat Radwanska at 1.95