Two players that could use a deep run at the 2016 Rio Olympics to boost their confidence are Caroline Wozniacki and Garbine Muguruza. Both won their opening round matches, and with seeds falling on the women’s side (and men’s for that matter…just ask Novak Djokovic) there is an opportunity to finish with a medal. For Caroline, it’s been a long fall from when she was world #1. She’s only 26 years old, but having fallen to #48 in the rankings, it will be a tough climb back to glory. Draws will be very difficult until she raises her ranking, but raising her ranking will be difficult because of tough draws. After defeating Lucie Hradecka 6-2 6-2 in round 1, Caroline gets #11 seed and 2-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova next. One of my faves, Petra is unpredictable. She can be a world beater or very ordinary, depending on the day. We’ll see which Kvitova shows up in round 2.
Since winning Roland Garros 2016, Garbine Muguruza has been struggling to find her game. This sometimes happens after a maiden Major win. I’ve often compared Garbi slumping to Li Na slumping after her Roland Garros win. If there were a time for Mugu to get things back on track, it would be at the Rio Olympics. The Spaniard has familial ties to Venezuela and should be a crowd favorite. She has a favorable draw. There is nobody in her quarter of the draw, except possibly Lucie Safarova, that should pose a threat to Garbine. She wouldn’t face Safarova until the quarters…and despite a great doubles win over the Williams sisters in Rio, Lucie still isn’t quite the player she was before her illness. Reaching the semis is completely in Muguruza’s hands. If she plays even 85% of her capability, she makes it to the semis. If not, the slump continues.
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3 GARBINE MUGURUZA d. Andreea Mitu, 6-2 6-2
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI d. Lucie Hradecka, 6-2 6-2