Following an entertaining pair of matches over the past few days, a riveting all-American third round encounter between world No. 1 Serena Williams and 15-year-old Catherine Bellis on Sunday afternoon in Miami. This marks the first time that these two competitors will cross paths on the professional tour and should make for an enthralling affair.
The world No. 1 began her Miami campaign against Monica Niculescu, whom she faced in her first match back at Indian Wells two weeks ago. This time, however, it was an easier encounter overall, as she cruised to a 6-3, 6-1 victory.
“It was definitely easier today than last time,” Williams said of playing Niculescu. “I knew what to expect. I still got a little bit frustrated today, but overall was able to stay calm more than last time. “I don’t think I had that many unforced errors compared to when we played at Indian Wells.”
Williams will now come up against 15-year-old CiCi Bellis, who defeated Zarina Diyas in straight sets 6-2, 6-1 to secure her spot in the third round. Following her impressive rise to fame at last year’s US Open, all eyes will be on the teenager to see if she can recreate some of that magic in Miami.
“It’s going to be really fun,” Bellis, the youngest player in the Miami Open draw, said. “I have nothing to lose, so I’m just going to play my game and see what happens.”
This marks the first time that these two competitors will cross paths on the WTA tour and could make for an enthralling affair. CiCi has made it clear that she has nothing to lose, and while she may not pose a threat to Williams on paper, she could certainly make this an interesting match.
Prediction: Serena Williams in Straight Sets