Top seed Serena Williams will attempt to test her luck once again in China, as he will begin her campaign in Beijing against Silvia Soler-Espinosa, whom she has never encountered previously on the professional tour.
Coming off a remarkable fortnight in New York, the world No. 1 was forced to exit the Wuhan Open under dire circumstances. Williams was involved in a competitive battle against French No. 1 Alize Cornet before breaking for a 6-5 lead in the opening set. At that point, Williams called for the medic and official to check her blood pressure and temperature before swiftly calling for her retirement. It was the most bizarre conclusion to a match since Williams retired from the Wimbledon doubles competition with her sister Venus due to an illness as well.
Following an opening round loss at the US Open, world NO. 69 Soler-Espinosa managed a victory in the Guangzhou main draw before losing to Maria Sharapova vanquisher Timea Bacsinszky in the second round. From then on, she lost in the Wuhan qualifying round but successfully reached the main draw in Beijing with wins over Kristina Mladenovic and Varvara Lepchenko.
Although Williams and Soler-Espinosa have never crossed paths on the professional tour, this is a contest that will heavily favour the top-ranked American. Unless Williams is still dealing with the effects of her viral illness, she should have o trouble dispatching a player ranked 68 spots below her and with little to offer her in terms of power and technique.
Prediction: Serena Williams in Straight Sets