Caroline Wozniacki was the fourth seed going into the US Open and ranked at fourth in the world but the Dane who made the final last year was defeated in the second round in a three set match against Petra Cetkovska with this being only her second main draw win of the year with her first coming in the first round!
In the second half of last year Wozniacki played some exceptional tennis going far in tournaments and was the only player in my opinion to actually cause problems for Serena Williams in their meetings. The former world number one was also one of the stars of the show at the WTA Finals and with that form in the final few months of the season I did expect to see that this season but it just hasn’t happened.
When you talk about a top 5 player you expect them to challenge in the major tournaments and to play at a high level throughout the year but for Wozniacki it hasn’t happened with a win/loss of 34/18 to date which isn’t to the level you would expect from a top player.
I like Wozniacki she is a very good player however she does lose a lot of matches which fall into the bracket of “one’s you should be winning.” Every top player will lose an unexpected match once or twice during the year but has lost close matches to Cetkovska, Goerges and Lepchenko this year matches she should be winning.
The year hasn’t been a disaster for Wozniacki as she did win her 23rd career title in Kuala Lumpur earlier on in the year but didn’t have to play a single player ranked inside the world’s top 80 to lift the title. When you look at the players she has lost to this year it’s not been loses to players who are all ranked outside the top 40 but has struggled to beat players who are in form and playing well.
Wozniacki has beaten top players this year but has struggled against players who have been in good form like Bencic, Muguruza, Kerber, Venus and Azarenka. Losing to Cetkovska who is ranked at 149 in the world was a total shock especially as Wozniacki did have four match points but just couldn’t find the finish line.
With Wozniacki not really hitting the heights we know she can this year I think from now until the end of the season her focus should be on qualifying for the WTA Finals in Singapore with the Dane currently down at 14 with the top 8 qualifying for the tournament. This was meant to be the year where she improved on what she achieved during the second half of last season but hasn’t! From now until the end of the season she has over 1600 points to defend and 690 of those are from the WTA Finals and right now I can’t see her qualifying for Singapore.
Wozniacki has to have a good week in Tokyo where she is the top seed to potentially qualify for the tournament. The Dane opens her tournament against a qualifier in round one but also could face a tricky opponent in Kristina Mladenovic who is in good form this year.