A highly intriguing fourth round match0up is scheduled to take place between Simona Halep and Sloane Stephens. This is just the fourth time these two competitors will meet on the professional tour, with the American leading the head-to-head series 2-1. Halep holds a win in their only clay court meeting back in 2012. Check out the Stephens vs Halep Head to Head matches.
World No. 4 Simona Halep continued her streak of marvelous tennis, as defeated Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor 6-3, 6-0 to set up a fourth round clash with Stephens. The contest lasted just over an hour, with the second set being a particularly lopsided affair.
“This is the third match where I have played really great tennis,” Halep said. “It’s not a surprise because I’m more confident in myself, and I’m feeling the ball really well here. I love this tournament. I love to be here and I’m enjoying the moment now. It’s my best of my career, and I have to be happy on court and to fight for my chance.”
Her opponent, Sloane Stephens, may not have been at her best for the majority of the season, but she seems to find her form during Grand Slams. All her contests have been straight sets so far, including her most recent win against Makarova, which concluded 6-3, 6-4. She is aware that her upcoming opponent is in far better form than the last time they clashed on the tour, which will make this a far tougher contest.
“For her, I think she’s played really, really well, like, in the smaller tournaments like I haven’t done, and she has a lot of experience with that,” Stephens said. “I have a lot of experience here. I think we’re just going to go out there and compete and just see what happens. I know she’s going to give her best, and so am I.”
Halep also commented on the upcoming encounter:
“It’s a surprise that the first three seeds lost and not easy to be the highest one left, or to play Sloane,” Halep said. “I played her in Australia a couple of seasons ago and she beat me very fast. Now I think I’m more prepared than I was then. I have confidence I can take revenge.”
This is the fourth time these two competitors will cross paths on the professional tour. Stephens won the last two consecutive meetings, including their most recent encounter at the Australian Open. While that may be the case, Stephens has not faced Halep since her meteoric rise through the rankings. The Romanian wil undoubtedly be the favourite for this encounter, and it will be interesting to see if she will live up to her new mantle.
Prediction: Simona Halep in Three Sets