Two of the WTA Tour’s most talented competitors will clash in the semi-final round of the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells. This marks the sixth time they meet on the professional circuit, and while the Radwanska vs Halep Head-to-Head stands at 3-2, the Romanian has won their two most recent encounters, including a win in Doha earlier this year and have been a near-unstoppable force on the tour this season.
The second-seed needed 2 hours and 33 minutes to dispatch of former Indian Wells champion Jelena Jankovic 7-5 2-6 6-4. Radwanska is now through to the semi-finals at Indian Wells for the second time in her career, having gone this far in 2011 before falling to Caroline Wozniacki.
Looking ahead to her Friday match-up, Radwanska spoke highly of her opponent Simona Halep, who took the tour by storm this season with her overwhelming performances.
“Simona’s having a really unbelievable season, and last year as well,” Radwanska said . “I lost to her just a few weeks ago in Doha – I didn’t play badly in that match, but she was just playing some unbelievable tennis. I couldn’t do anything to win that match against her.
“I’m really looking forward to it, especially now that she’s going to be in the Top 5 as well.”
Halep’s convincing victory over Dellacqua moves her into the semifinals of a WTA Premier Mandatory event for the first time in her career and is also projected to rise to No.5 in the rankings, depending on results the rest of the tournament.
“It was my best tennis,” Halep said. “She had 5-2 and was playing really well. I started the match with one tactic, but it wasn’t too good. I wanted to hit every ball, and she likes this game. Then I knew I had to change something. I started opening the court more and using angles. I started finishing the points very quickly – if you stay in the rallies with Radwanska, it’s not easy. You really have to run a lot. She’s a very smart player, and I wanted to play the same as her – that was my tactic after 2-5.”
Radwanska leads Halep in their head-to-head, 3-2, though Halep has won their last two meetings. They were also the tightest matches contested between the two, which will likely be the case tomorrow afternoon when they meet for a sixth time. Halep has already defeated Radwanska 7-5, 6-2 in Doha this season and will be looking to carry forth that momentum to the final of the BNP Paribas Open.
Prediction: Simona Halep in Three Sets