Simona Halep has the opportunity to exact revenge against Amanda Anisimova when they play their third round matchup at the French Open on Friday. It was Anisimova’s shock win against Halep in last year’s quarter-final that paved the way for Ashleigh Barty’s surprise win, when many saw Halep as the expected victor at the beginning of the fortnight.
Watch the Halep vs Anisimova Live Stream Here.
Anisimova hasn’t quite kicked on in the way many will have anticipated following that run to the French Open semi final. While injury did stunt her progress a little, losses to the likes of Jessica Pegula and Jil Teichmann post-lockdown will disappoint some. A third round loss at the US Open to Maria Sakkari is not the end of the world but for a up and coming top 20 player, some would have expected her to do better than a 6-3 6-1 loss. She has looked good so far this week against weak opposition, beating Tamara Korpatsch and Bernarda Pera both 6-2 6-0.
While not yet at her best, Halep hasn’t faced much danger in her two matches so far here. The Rome champion started slowly against Sara Sorribes Tormo in round one but eventually exposed the Spaniards limitations as the match went on. She followed that with a 6-3 6-4 win against Irina Begu, ensuring her unbeaten record against her countrywomen continued. “She’s a very strong opponent and she’s also powerful, the serve is really strong. Today the court was heavy so I couldn’t return very well, but I managed well in the end and I think I played the right game when I needed to.”
Halep’s win streak is now at 16 and she continues to look the player to beat in Paris. “I know it’s going to be tough because she’s hitting the ball strong and flat, so it’s going to be tough.” she said. Against a rising star and somewhat unknown quantity, Halep got caught out last year. She will do all she can to avoid it a second time. Anisimova does have the ability to overpower Halep but may find it tougher this time round with coach Darren Cahill likely to have her far more prepared.
Prediction – Simona Halep in straight sets