- Katie Boulter v Elise Mertens 
- H2H: First Meeting
MIAMI, FLORIDA, USA – Katie Boulter battled from a set down to beat Kristyna Pliskova and faces No. 16 seed Elise Mertens.
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Recap: Katie Boulter def. Kristyna Pliskova 4-6, 6-3, 6-3
Katie Boulter weathered a heavy hitting storm from Kristyna Pliskova to come from a set behind to book her spot in the second round of the Miami Open. In fact, Boulter might feel she was a little unlucky in the first set, having pegged Pliskova twice when broken in a tight first set, before the Czech broke the Brit once more in the penultimate game, to take a one-set lead.
However, things started to unravel for Pliskova who found herself 1-4 down in the second set, and despite getting a couple more games on the board, she could not find a way to stop Boulter from levelling the match. The Brit was the first to break in the decider and did not face another break point on her serve again in the match, as Boulter broke one more time to book her spot in the second round.
Katie Boulter v Elise Mertens  H2H & Match Fundamentals
|Katie Boulter v Elise Mertens ||H2H: First Meeting|
|WTA Miami||Miami, Florida, USA|
|Hard (O)||Prize Money: $16,000|
|Scheduled first on Court 3 at 11am (3pm GMT)||Amazon Prime Video <– Sign up for trial|
Preview: Katie Boulter v Elise Mertens  | H2H: First Meeting
Elise Mertens has the benefit of a bye into the second round, as she bods to get further than the third round in Miami. She has managed fairly decent runs in the three tournaments she has played this far but was last on the court in Dubai. More importantly, Boulter with have some time under her feet in these courts, which can always instil a bit of confidence.
Tale of the Tape – Key Stats (2021)
|H2H:||Katie Boulter (WR 319)||Elise Mertens (WR 17)|
|Tournament Previous Best||R1 (2018)||R3 (2018-19)|
|1st Serve Return Points Won %||43.2||28|
|Return Points Won %||49.8||38|
|Break Point Conversion %||63.6||50|
|Break Points Saved %||66||51|
|Total Points Won %||54.5||49.7|
Boulter has been making the most of being able to get into key tournaments with her special ranking, but the tale of the tape shows Mertens’ consistency in every aspect, even despite having skipped a week between Dubai and the abbreviated US hard court spring swing.
Mertens will be a very different prospect to Boulter’s opening match. The Belgian mixes defence with aggressive baseline play and hits deep off her ground-strokes, with her backhand the stronger of the two. Also expect her to come into the net to finish her shots off.
Boulter’s aggressive heavy striking tennis will rely on her big first serve to steal a few free points but if her forehand starts to let her down a bit, this could be a hard day in the office.
It would be great to see Boulter take this to a decider and make Mertens work hard but her consistency puts her very much as the favourite for this encounter.
Prediction: Mertens in two sets.
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