While it’s a relatively quiet week in the tennis world following the conclusion of the Australian Open, there’s still a few events worth tracking. The Open Sud de France is the only ATP Tour event ongoing this week, while the WTA Tour is hosting the Thailand Open and Upper Austria Ladies Linz.

The Thailand Open, a WTA 250 indoor hard courts event also known as the Hua Hin Championships, is being held at the True Arena Hua Hin in Thailand for the fourth time. The event, formerly known as the Toyota Thailand Open, began in 2019, but wasn’t held in either 2021 or 2022 due to the pandemic.

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Thailand Open History

While it’s only a WTA 250 event, the Thailand Open has had three worthy champions thus far. Dayana Yastremska, who made the semi-finals of the 2024 Australian Open, won the inaugural tournament by defeating Ajla Tomljanovic 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 (3) in the final. Magda Linette, a semi-finalist at the 2023 Australian Open, won the 2020 Thailand Open.

Zhu Lin, who is into the semi-finals at this year’s Thailand Open and was the second seed in the draw, is the defending champion. The 30-year-old Chinese player beat Lesia Tsurenko in last year’s final.

Weekly Recap

Linette, the 2020 champion and top seed in the draw, was ousted early in the tournament with a first-round loss to Diana Shnaider, who has since rode that momentum into the semi-finals. Shnaider beat Linette 6-4, 1-6, 6-1, and followed that up with straight set victories over Paula Badosa and qualifier Dalma Galfi. The 19-year-old Russian was the ACC Freshman of the Year in 2023 and has already made quite an impact on the WTA Tour, reaching three semi-finals and one final.

Lin, the second seed, earned her way into the semi-finals with straight set victories over Taylah Preston, Linda Fruhvirtova, and Arina Rodinova. She’ll meet fellow Chinese player Yafan Wang, who overcame an early set deficit to beat America Katie Volynets in the quarter-finals early Friday morning.

Xin Wang, one of three Chinese players to make the semi-finals, will meet Shnaider on Saturday. She reached the semis with a 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 victory over Yulina Putintseva on Friday. She previously beat Viktorija Golubic and wildcard Thasporn Naklo, one of two Thai players in the draw.

Semi-Final Betting Previews

Diana Shnaider vs. Xinyu Wang

Shnaider has only played a handful of matches on the WTA Tour, but she has already met Wang on the court. Wang, the world No. 63, beat Shnaider 6-4, 7-5 at the Guangzhou Open last September. However, Shnaider has been much improved since then and has scored wins over quality opponents like Badosa, Fruhvirtova, and Petra Kvitova. She is a slight betting favorite against Wang and should advance to her second career WTA final.

Lin Zhu vs. Yafan Wang

Zhu and Wang have met seven times in their careers, with Wang holding a 4-3 advantage. However, Wang will be in tough on Saturday in a match that is less than 24 hours after her 1-6, 6-3, 7-6 (4) victory over American Katie Volynets. Wang has been on court much longer than Zhu and has lost two of her last three matches against her semi-final opponent.

Final Prediction

Shnaider has been quietly building momentum on the WTA Tour after a successful year with the UNC Tar Heels last year. She’s certainly a player to keep an eye on in the near future and is a good pick to break through here with her first career victory. She beat Zhu 6-4, 6-0 last year at the Jiangxi Open.

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