The much anticipated Simona Halep-Bianca Andreescu matchup failed to materialise with instead it being Taylor Townsend taking her turn to have a crack at the in-form Canadian. Andreescu remains one of the favourites for the tournament but will have to avoid getting complacent despite this matchup appearing far easier on paper.
An incredible 3-6 6-2 7-6 comeback victory from the American against Halep helped Townsend into the third round, where she beat another Romanian in Sorana Cirstea to move into the second week. She came to the net over 170 times in her two wins and with great success, figures that just aren’t seen in the women’s game these days. Coming to the net often can leave you vulnerable though and Cirstea did take some advantage by cracking quite a few return winners, something Andreescu will be taking note of.
Andreescu came through a frustrating clash with Caroline Wozniacki, eventually breaking the Dane down in straight sets 6-4 6-4. It wasn’t the best performance from the Canadian, who hit over 30 unforced errors, but she will pleased to get through without too much fuss.
“I felt really good. I started off the match pretty well, and then the second set, as well. I was up 3-0 but then as expected she found a way and she changed a couple of things,” Andreescu said afterwards. “I felt like I relaxed a little bit [in the second set]. But then I put things together, and then I managed to pull through in the end.”
Townsend is going to offer a completely different style and Andreescu will be eager to nullify the net prowess of the 23 year old. “I know she loves coming to the net. She has incredible volleys. I’ll for sure work on some passing shots tomorrow during my practice.” she said. Andreescu was on the losing end of a Townsend-led team in doubles at the weekend but should avoid the same fate in singles here.
Prediction – Bianca Andreescu in straight sets