Sam Smith makes her WTA Fantasy picks for the Toray Pan Pacific Open in Osaka.

Naomi Osaka


“I’m going with Naomi because I feel she’s turned a corner. The US Open is out of the way, and I thought she was serving far better in New York. I also liked the way she played in Japan last year, handling the pressure after her win at Flushing Meadows. With her serve, the quick hardcourts in Osaka will suit her.”


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Donna Vekic


“I’m a huge fan of Donna. I thought the way she played through to the quarterfinals at the US Open showed a real breakthrough and I believe she is ready to make an assault on the world’s Top 10. Definitely one to watch in Asia and moving forward.”


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Camila Giorgi


“Camila has been a bit ‘in and out’ this year but she’s one of those players you can never underestimate. She hits the ball very hard and flat and is especially dangerous on a court that is playing quickly, as long as she keeps her consistency up.”


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Kristina Mladenovic


“Kiki has started to play much better since working with coach Sascha Bajin and she’s someone I feel is going to win a lot of matches on the faster hardcourts. I think she’s really motivated to get her ranking back up before the end of the year, and I see her having a really good Asian swing.”


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