Caroline Wozniacki vs Sloane Stephens WTA Toronto tennis preview, predictions and tips: Wozniacki and Stephens clash for a spot in Rogers Cup final

Andrew Hendrie in WTA 12 Aug 2017
  • Caroline Wozniacki vs Sloane Stephens is live from Toronto at 1.00pm local time on Saturday (6.00pm BST)
  • Wozniacki has won five of their six matches, but Stephens won their last clash in Auckland in 2016
  • Watch and bet on tennis live from Toronto at bet365 > sports > live streaming tennis
Caroline Wozniacki (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)

Caroline Wozniacki attempts to reach her sixth final of the season when she takes on the resurgent Sloane Stephens on Saturday in the Rogers Cup semi-finals in Toronto.

Watch and bet on Wozniacki vs Stephens live from Toronto at bet365 > sports > live streaming tennis. Their semi-final duel begins at 1.00pm local time on Saturday (6.00pm BST).



At the start of the week, Caroline Wozniacki had never won a match in Toronto, losing in the opening round in 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013 and 2015. However, she did capture the Rogers Cup title in 2010 when the event was held in Montreal - is Wozniacki now primed to secure a Canada double? After scoring a sensational victory over World No. 1 Karolina Pliskova, Wozniacki now faces a player she has beaten five times before for a place in the final - returning American star Sloane Stephens, who came into this event ranked in the 900s after surgery but is set to rise into the top 160 after making her first Premier 5 semi-final. It promises to be a scintillating contest as Wozniacki and Stephens take to court at…

Firmly entrenched in the top 10 after a stellar last 12 months, Caroline Wozniacki continued her impressive form at the Rogers Cup on Friday, registering her first ever win over a World No. 1 after staging a tremendous comeback to conquer Karolina Pliskova in an entertaining and rain-affected three-set battle. Wozniacki recovered from 1-5 in the opening set and 2-4 in the third to ultimately claim a 7-5 6-7(3) 6-4 victory.

Wozniacki was previously 0-6 against No. 1 players in her career, losing five times to Serena Williams and once to Dinara Safina - although the Dane said she was unaware of her record against the world’s best coming into the contest.

"She's had a great year and she's been playing really well. I don't really think about [beating a No.1] too much," Wozniacki said. "I knew I was going to play someone that was really tough today, and I'm just happy with my win and that's really it."

It’s remarkable to think that Wozniacki hadn’t won a match in Toronto before this week, but she’s been in brilliant form this time, crushing young gun Ekaterina Alexandrova and long-time rival Agnieszka Radwanska before edging Pliskova on Friday. The 2010 Rogers Cup champion in Montreal, it shouldn’t really come as a surprise that Wozniacki is enjoying a deep run in Toronto when you consider her outstanding last 12 months.

It was around this time last season that Wozniacki’s current revival was launched, with the 27-year-old making the US Open semi-finals and picking up titles in Tokyo and Hong Kong, elevating her ranking from the 70s before New York to inside the top 20 at season’s end. Wozniacki has stormed back into the top 10 this season, with a series of consistent results - including five runner-up finishes in Doha, Dubai, Miami, Eastbourne and Bastad - propelling back into the world’s elite and a high seeding at the biggest events.


Still searching for her first title of 2017, can Wozniacki advance into her sixth final of the season? She’ll have to beat a player who is enjoying a superb resurgence of her own.

Sloane Stephens (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
Sloane Stephens secured her spot in her first WTA Premier 5 semi-final with a sensational comeback victory over former French Open finalist Lucie Safarova, saving three match points and winning the last four games to emerge a 6-2 1-6 7-5 winner. Stephens, who was sidelined for close to a year after undergoing foot and ankle surgeries, showcased tremendous resolve and fight, stepping up to fire a crunching backhand winner down the line on one of the match points as Safarova served for the match at 5-4, while the American was the more adventurous of the pair as nerves crept into the Czech’s game after missing her initial opportunity to close out the match.

The win over Safarova follows excellent victories over grand slam champions Petra Kvitova and Angelique Kerber, well and truly signalling that Stephens is on her way back to the top. Already the 24-year-old is set to make one of the biggest ranking jumps in a single week we’ve ever seen, with her semi-final in Toronto launching her a whopping 782 spots from 934 in the world to No. 152. A win over Wozniacki will have her on the brink of a return to the top 100, while a dream run to the title would place Stephens around the 60s mark.

It’s a deserved rise back up the rankings as Stephens was playing some outstanding tennis before her enforced break, winning three WTA titles in 2016 at Auckland (beating Wozniacki en route), Acapulco and Charleston. Stephens was displaying the type of form that saw her climb to a career-high No. 11 in the world and beat Serena Williams to make the Australian Open semi-finals, but that’s when disaster struck and she was forced to go under the knife in order to repair ankle and foot issues.

But Stephens is back and ready for even more glory in Toronto as she targets another upset over a top 10 star and grand slam finalist. Wozniacki has enjoyed more success in this match-up, winning five of their six encounters in straight sets, although Stephens did win their last match in Auckland in 2016 - but that was when Wozniacki was really struggling. Given Wozniacki’s sparkling form at the moment - and her overall match toughness and experience at this level - you’d have to give her the edge again, but don’t rule out Stephens - one of the best competitors on tour and hungrier than every upon her return - to turn this into another big battle.


Share this with your friends

To:
From:
Your comments:

Caroline Wozniacki vs Sloane Stephens WTA Toronto tennis preview, predictions and tips: Wozniacki and Stephens clash for a spot in Rogers Cup final

Caroline Wozniacki attempts to reach her sixth final of the season when she takes on the resurgent Sloane Stephens on Saturday in the Rogers Cup semi-finals in Toronto.

Read more »

You have unread messages

You have unread messages