The toughest quarter in the women’s draw will provide one of the highlights on Day 6 of the Australian Open when the current WTA No. 1 Simona Halep takes on a former No. 1 in Venus Williams. Venus has never won the tournament before but has twice made the final, losing to her sister in 2003 and 2017. Check out the Venus vs Halep H2H matches.
Halep gritted out another win in round two, beating Sofia Kenin in three sets. She almost paid for her wastefulness in the third set, falling down a break before winning the last four games to close out the match 6-3 6-7 6-4 having also led by 3-0 in the second set. “It was a very tough one. She’s very solid. Was really tough to make some winners, some points, easier.” she said. “These matches are good for me at the beginning of the year to get the rhythm, to get the energy back, to see that I am able to stay there for two hours, more than two hours.”
Venus also needed three sets to get past Alize Cornet but the decider was far less stressful for her, racing away to win 6-0 to move on. She will be hoping to put up better serving figures this time round, having faced 13 break points overall in the match. “I think I’m just playing really well at the net, hitting some really great volleys. You know, it’s one thing to get to the net, it’s another thing to finish the point.” Venus said of what’s going well this season so far.
While Halep will probably have preferred to be off court quicker in her victories, it could be argued the lengthy matches have been good for her match sharpness following her opening loss of the season. With Serena probably awaiting the winner, things are unlikely to get much easier. Halep is 2-3 against Venus but has lost just 7 games in the 2 matches played as a top 2 player. More of the same with Halep proving too strong defensively seems the most likely outcome.
“Tough one. But for sure I’m not going to run that much. Because it’s going to finish fast, the points. She’s a great player, champion. It’s always a big challenge for me to face the sisters.” she said. “I know how she plays. I have to be strong.”
Prediction – Simona Halep in straight sets