By Ros Satar, in Melbourne

  • Kyle Edmund v Santiago Giraldo – First Meeting
  • Heather Watson v Samantha Stosur [18] – H2H: Stosur leads 2-0
  • Naomi Broady v Daria Gavrilova [22] – H2H: 1-1
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – The rest of the Brits get going in Melbourne as the Australian Open Round 1 aims to complete today.

 

Kyle Edmund v Santiago Giraldo – First Meeting

Pray for the little neon yellow flufflies today as they will be battered back and forth from two pretty big hitters. Kyle Edmund plays an aggressive game and when he winds up that forehand he can hit a blistering ball. A hard worker, he could do with learning to embrace coming forward a little more but he seems to have moved on a lot from the physical issues that seemed to plague him not that long ago.

This time last year we saw something similar and it was a little alarming that it was happening so often – and if the temperatures hit the same kind of heights it will be a sever test for the Brit. Santiago Giraldo likes to flatten out the ball and is a mean returner, so Edmund’s big booming serve might just find itself challenged. That being said his style of play can lend itself to a high unforced error count.

Prediction: Edmund in four sets.

 

Heather Watson v Samantha Stosur [18] – H2H: Stosur leads 2-0

This is a tough ask for Heather Watson to emulate her run in 2013 to the third round, but there is always hope when Sam Stosur has to deal with the perennial devil on her shoulder of the pressure of a home Slam.

We possibly do exaggerate Stosur’s woes – she has been to the fourth round a couple of times (2006, 2010) so it might look as though those days are behind her. Watson has all the defensive capabilities to handle the famous Stosur serve, and she has a more aggressive game these days nut that can leave her prone to errors from time to time.

This will not be a coasting win, but if Watson, who only had the Hopman Cup as her warm-up, can instil a little self-belief she might just send the Aussie seed packing.

Prediction: Watson in three sets.

 

Naomi Broady v Daria Gavrilova [22] – H2H: 1-1

No. 3 Brit Naomi Broady takes on Aussie home hope Daria Gavrilova and comes in with at least a fair bit of tour match play under her belt. She did not quite match her run last year in Auckland and fell in the last round of Sydney qualifiers, so it is a fairly big task to tackle the Aussie.

Gavrilova seemed to warm up in the time she was at the Hopman cup and picked up a couple of rounds in Sydney, but she does enjoy putting on a show for the crowd. Last year she was able to swing free, taking out seeds Petra Kvitova and Kristina Mladenovic but showed a little vulnerability describing her behaviour as acting like a little girl, as she bowed out in the fourth round.

Both are quite feisty so we should see some fireworks – Broady has an effective serve that gets her out of trouble, but Gavrilova is likely to be just that more consistent.

Prediction: Gavrilova in two sets.

 

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