Rod Laver Arena
Anastasija Sevastova (LAT) vs. Ana Ivanovic (SRB)
Ranked outside the top 100 and with no matches prior to the Australian Open won this year, not even in the qualifying draws, Sevastova shouldn’t be able to beat Ivanovic. The Serb is facing a tough moment however, and she will certainly give something away. Probably not enough to lose the match.
Kirsten Flipkens (BEL) vs. Garbine Muguruza (ESP)
Hopefully Kirsten will be coming at the net to make the match more entertaining. After watching Muguruza playing in the first round, it is hard to believe she could be losing anytime soon. With Azarenka she is the favourite to reach the final in the bottom half of the draw.
Sam Groth (AUS) vs. Andy Murray (GBR)
Murray has already faced Groth’s serve in Davis Cup. Already against Zverev, the Brit seemed focused and on form. Andy should win in three sets, possibly lose one set in a tie-break.
David Ferrer (ESP) vs. Lleyton Hewitt (AUS)
This could be Lleyton’s farewell to tennis. Something tells me he is not ready for it yet. Let’s forecast another win for Hewitt…
Julia Goerges (GER) vs. Karolina Pliskova (CZE)
Pliskova faces a player that has her same style of playing, but not as much power. The Czech should win easily in two.
Margaret Court Arena
Gael Monfils (FRA) vs. Nicolas Mahut (FRA)
Not an easy match for Monfils, especially having to play a compatriot and friend. The 23rd seed should come out on top, but could probably lose one set on his way to victory.
Victoria Azarenka (BLR) vs. Danka Kovinic (MNE)
Victoria is on a roll this year and World No.54 Kovinic will hardly manage to keep up with Azarenka’s rhythm, let alone cause an upset.
Madison Keys (USA) vs. Yaroslava Shvedova (KAZ)
Angelique Kerber (GER) vs. Alexandra Dulgheru (ROU)
Kerber slightly tested, but should win in two sets.
Bernard Tomic (AUS) vs. Simone Bolelli (ITA)
Bolelli last year played a solid season, but this season he seems back to being too inconsistent. Tomic shouldn’t have too many problems in beating the Italian, who could possibly win a set.
Marcel Granollers (ESP) vs. John Isner (USA)
Isner should manage to edge the Spaniard in straight sets, thanks to his serve and better state of form.
Jelena Jankovic (SRB) vs. Laura Siegemund (GER)
Jankovic can lose to anyone these days, if she has a bad day on the court. The Serb should be too much of a good player anyway for the German, who won in Melbourne her first match in a Grand Slam main draw.
Radek Stepanek (CZE) vs. Stan Wawrinka (SUI)
An entertaining match hopefully, and definitively one to watch close. Wawrinka should be tested, but come out on top in four sets.
Show Court No.2
Naomi Osaka (JPN) vs. Elina Svitolina (UKR)
Svitolina can be inconsistent, but she should be able to advance in two sets.
Milos Raonic (CAN) vs. Tommy Robredo (ESP)
A tougher test for Brisbane winner Raonic. The Canadian should manage to keep Robredo far from the baseline, cutting the rallies short to prevail in four sets.
Alizé Cornet (FRA) vs. Shuai Zhang (CHN)
The Chinese has won the match of her life against Halep in the first round, but Cornet should prove to be too solid. The French is in great form after the win in Hobart and has the confidence she needs to go far in Melbourne now.
Jack Sock (USA) vs. Lukas Rosol (CZE)
This could be an interesting matchup and not an easy one for Sock. Jack already struggled in the first round against promising rising star Fritz, but Rosol isn’t someone to give matches away for free. A tough 4-set battle, possible a 5-setter, and Sock could end up losing it.
Show Court No.6
Joao Sousa (POR) vs. Santiago Giraldo (COL)
Despite losing in the first round to Fognini, Sousa showed a solid game on hard courts in Auckland. The Portuguese should advance to the third round.
Feliciano Lopez (ESP) vs. Guido Pella (ARG)
Not really a test for Feliciano, who should be able to close the match in three or four sets maximum.
Annika Beck (GER) vs. Timea Bacsinszky (SUI)
Here is a chance for Timea to do well in Australia, where she has the third round as her best result. A win today means she has equalled her best performance in Melbourne, but she could go further, if she were to face Jankovic next.
Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) vs. Tatjana Maria (GER)
Not really a tough test for the Russian, who likes to play in Australia. Makarova should win in two.
Show Court No.8
Johanna Konta (GBR) vs. Saisai Zheng (CHN)
Konta was impressive in her win over Venus Williams in the first round. All is set for the Brit to repeat herself, and she shouldn’t fail her chances, just as she did in New York few months ago.
Denisa Allertova (CZE) vs. Sabine Lisicki (GER)
Lisicki should use her serve to win the match in straight sets.
Tim Smyczek (USA) vs. Viktor Troicki (SRB)
Sydney winner Troicki the favourite against the American. Viktor is in splendid form and can go farther deep in the draw.
Andrey Kuznetsov (RUS) vs. Jeremy Chardy (FRA)
After the record marathon won against Gulbis, the French could be tired and face fatigue, especially in the heat of Melbourne. This could be an upset.
Dominic Thiem Downplays US Open Chances
The world No.4 has given a frank assessment about his hopes at the New York major shortly after the draw was made on Thursday.
Dominic Thiem may be a top four seed in next week’s US Open, but the Austrian has played down the prospect of him winning his first grand slam title at the event.
The 25-year-old has experienced a setback in his build up to the tournament. Since winning the Kitzbuhel Open on clay, Thiem has only managed to play three matches on a hard court. Reaching the quarter-finals of the Rogers Cup in what what was his best-ever run at the tournament. However, more recently Thiem has been sidelined from action due to a virus and pulled out of the Cincinnati Masters.
Thiem’s first round opponent at the US Open will be Italy’s Thomas Fabbiano, who has suffered two consecutive first round losses on the tour. Fabbiano reached the third round in New York back in 2017, but has missed the two most recent editions.
“Without a doubt, there are much tougher rivals than Thomas Fabbiano in a first round, although I must say that, after overcoming this viral disease, I do not expect miracles.” Thiem told Sky Sport Austria on Thursday.
Heading into the event, Thiem has said he has set out no goal. He will be defending 360 ranking points after reaching the quarter-finals 12 months ago before losing in a five-set thriller to Rafael Nadal. Overall, Thiem’s win-loss at the US Open is 15-5 heading into this year.
“Right now I do not consider reaching a quarterfinals or a semifinal. I want to go round to round, looking beyond would be presumptuous.” He said.
“In the next few days I will keep my training to a minimum, the goal is to be in perfect shape on Monday.”
Despite his recent setbacks, 2019 has been a season of success for the world No.4. In March he won the biggest title of his career at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells. He would then go on to win trophies in Barcelona and Kitzhbuel. However, in the grand slams he has been less consistent. At the French Open Thiem reached the final, but has failed to win back-to-back matches at both the Australian Open (second round) and Wimbledon (first round). Although at the Australian Open he was forced to withdraw from the tournament due to illness.
The US Open will get underway on Monday.
Dominic Thiem at the US Open
Rafael Nadal ESP
|L||60 46 57 764 675|
|Round of 16||5||
Kevin Anderson RSA
|W||75 62 762|
|Round of 32||74||
Taylor Fritz USA
|W||36 63 765 64|
|Round of 64||31||
Steve Johnson USA
|W||675 63 57 64 61|
|Round of 128||81||
Mirza Basic BIH
|W||63 61 64|
|Round of 16||28||
Juan Martin del Potro ARG
|L||61 62 16 671 46|
|Round of 32||34||
Adrian Mannarino FRA
|W||75 63 64|
|Round of 64||108||
Taylor Fritz USA
|W||64 64 46 75|
|Round of 128||186||
Alex de Minaur AUS
|W||64 61 61|
|Round of 16||142||
Juan Martin del Potro ARG
|L||36 23 (RET)|
|Round of 32||39||
Pablo Carreno Busta ESP
|W||16 64 64 75|
|Round of 64||89||
Ricardas Berankis LTU
|W||64 63 62|
|Round of 128||66||
John Millman AUS
|W||63 26 57 64 63|
|Round of 32||14||
Kevin Anderson RSA
|L||36 673 673|
|Round of 64||70||
Denis Istomin UZB
|W||64 64 10 (RET)|
|Round of 128||76||
Daniel Gimeno-Traver ESP
|W||75 63 75|
|Round of 16||7||
Tomas Berdych CZE
|L||16 26 46|
|Round of 32||21||
Feliciano Lopez ESP
|W||64 62 63|
|Round of 64||12||
Ernests Gulbis LTA
|W||46 36 64 63 63|
|Round of 128||84||
Lukas Lacko SLO
|W||63 63 62|
Serena Williams Drawn To Face Maria Sharapova At US Open 2019
Serena Williams versus Maria Sharapova is the headline clash in an intriguing 2019 US Open Women’s Singles Draw.
Serena Williams will play Maria Sharapova in the first round of US Open 2019. It will be their first-ever meeting at Flushing Meadows.
When these women clash, it is always a talking point, always a reason to get excited. The American and the Russian are such high-profile athletes that it does not even seem to matter that the American has beaten Maria Sharapova an incredible 18 times in a row.
The sense of anticipation for the encounter is even higher in some ways because it is so long – three years and seven months – since they last faced each other. That was in the quarter-final of the 2016 Australian Open. They were due to play last year at the French Open, but Williams pulled out with a pectoral injury. Hopefully fitness issues will not ruin things this time around.
Barty and Kerber join Serena and Sharapova in packed quarter
The winner of the Serena-Sharapova match will emerge into a favourable section of the draw. Crafty 29th seed Hsieh Su-Wei is the only real obstacle between them and the last 16.
However, if either the American or the Russian makes it to the fourth round, their route will then become much more difficult. 12th seed Anastasija Sevastova, a quarter-finalist on each of her last three appearances at Flushing Meadows, is their most likely opponent at that stage.
In the other half of the quarter, 2016 champion Angelique Kerber faces a tricky opener against Kristina Mladenovic, while World No.2 Ashleigh Barty takes on Zarina Diyas. The German and The Australian should be wary of 30th seed Maria Sakkari. The Greek beat Elina Svitolina, Petra Kvitova and Aryna Sabalenka during excellent runs in San Jose and Cincinnati.
After an easy start, things will get tough for Osaka
The World No.1 and reigning US Open champion Naomi Osaka has endured a difficult few months, so she will be happy to see that the draw has been relatively kind to her.
The Japanese player will face Anna Blinkova in round one and then either Astra Sharma or Magda Linette in round two. If she gets through those, she could face difficult matches against teen sensation Cori Gauff in round three and 13th seed Belinda Bencic in round four.
If Osaka makes it to the last eight, there are number of potential opponents who could cause her problems. Aryna Sabalenka is one, if she can negotiate a tricky opener against Victoria Azarenka and a challenging third-round meeting with Donna Vekic.
Vekic is another possible quarter-finalist, as is Julia Goerges, who could cause an upset in the third round by beating the 7th seed with a poor record at Flushing Meadows: Kiki Bertens.
Halep well-placed to put first-round exits behind her
Wimbledon champion Simona Halep has fallen at the first hurdle at the last two US Opens. In 2017, she lost to Sharapova. And then she was thrashed by Kaia Kanepi in an error-strewn display in 2018.
Both of those were tough first-round draws, so the Romanian will be glad to be taking on a qualifier this time around. The fourth seed should reach the last 16 with relative ease, but that is where the real challenges are likely to begin with a possible clash against rising star Bianca Andreescu.
In the other half of the quarter, a potential third-round encounter between 11th seed Sloane Stephens and 24th seed Garbine Muguruza catches the eye. To reach that stage, the American and the Spaniard may have to beat tricky second-round opponents in the shape of Svetlana Kuznetsova and Jelena Ostapenko respectively.
6th seed Petra Kvitova is also in that section. The Czech will be keen to put a spell of patchy form behind her by coming through a relatively calm section of the draw that also include 25th seed Elise Mertens.
Pliskova, Svitolina and Keys feature in a quarter full of potential winners
While other sections steal the headlines for obvious reasons, the quarter that includes Karolina Pliskova, Madison Keys and Elina Svitolina may be the toughest of all.
2016 runner-up Pliskova could face Caroline Garcia in round three and Johanna Konta and Marketa Vondrousova in round four.
Five-time Grand Slam quarter-finalist Svitolina might have to beat Venus Williams in round two, 32nd seed Dayana Yastremska in round three and Sofia Kenin or Keys in round four to reach the last eight again.
Keys will be feeling confident again after she won the title in Cincinnati. She will probably face Kenin in the third round, Svitolina in the fourth round and then Pliskova in the quarter-final if she makes it that far.
Mats Wilander Questions Federer’s US Open Hopes, Serena’s Consistency And Kyrgios’ Antics
The former world No.1 has spoken out about a variety of top tennis stars ahead of the final grand slam of the season.
With less than a week to go until the start of the US Open, a candidly speaking Mats Wilander has shared his opinion on a series of topics set to take place during this year’s tournament.
The 54-year-old former tennis pro has cast doubts on Roger Federer’s chances in Flushing Meadows. The Swiss player has won more grand slam singles titles than any other player on the men’s tour, however, he hasn’t triumphed at the US Open since 2008. Federer suffered a shock loss to John Millman in the fourth round last year.
The 38-year-old will be seeded third in this year’s draw and could potentially play both Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic if he wants to win the title. Should he play world No.1 Djokovic, Wilander believes the Swiss maestro will struggle. However, he is more positive about Nadal’s chances. The Spaniard is the only one of the trio to have won a hard court title within the past two months.
“I think the biggest obstacle for someone like Federer is that he is going to play seven hard games,” Wilander told Eurosport.
“No matter what the style is, you may have a problem against a great server or a bottom player.
“Rafael Nadal is the only player who can beat Novak Djokovic in a five-set Grand Slam game.
“We need to have two boys in the semi-finals who don’t call themselves Roger, Rafa or Stan or Novak.”
Federer last played Djokovic in the final at Wimbledon, which he lost in five sets after having two championship points. Making it the fourth consecutive time he has lost to the Serbian in their head-to-head. On the other hand, Federer has a more promising record against Nadal. Winning six out of their seven meetings on the tour since 2015.
‘Slowly disappearing’ Serena
In the women’s draw eyes will be on Serena Williams as she once again bids to equal Margaret Court’s all-time record of 24 grand slam titles. The American is yet to win a title of any sort since becoming a mother. Settling for runner-up at three out of the past five grand slam tournaments. Including Wimbledon, where she suffered a comprehensive straight sets loss to Simona Halep.
The lack of silverware in recent time has been one debated by those following Williams’ career. However, Wilander believes the problem is that she no longer intimidates her rivals on the court.
“Her intimidation factor is slowly disappearing, compared to the youngest ones,” he said.
“She has not been consistent in the last four or five years on the regular tour and has not played enough tournaments and won enough victories.
“The dressing room probably thinks that there is a small chance that they can win because the consistency – both physical and in their tennis – has not been there.
“The intimidation factor is not as strong with Serena, as it is with someone like Roger or Rafa.”
Williams will be seeking redemption in New York following her high-profile outburst in last year’s final. She clashed with umpire Carlos Ramos after being issued with a warning for coaching. Prompting her to call the official a ‘liar’ and a ‘cheat.’ She was then issued with two additional penalties that amounted to a game penalty. In a recent interview Williams’ coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, has praised the incident.
Six-time champion Williams will be seeded eighth in this year’s tournament.
The Kyrgios problem
On the topic of Nick Kyrgios, Wilander has urged the Australian to become more professional on the tour. Kyrgios splits opinion in the world of sport due to his controversial behaviour. The most recent incident took place last week at the Cincinnati Masters where he was knocked out by Karen Khachanov in the second round. During that match, he engaged in a heated confrontation with the umpire and committed a series of code violations. Including walking off the court when he wasn’t allowed to and calling the official a “F***ing tool.” Kyrgios was subsequently fined $113,000 for eight separate incidents.
It hasn’t all been doom and gloom for the 24-year-old, who recently won the Citi Open in Washington. The way he conducted himself during that tournament is what Wilander hopes to see at the US Open next week.
“I hope he doesn’t behave like he did in Cincinnati,” he said.
“I think that every week that passes is showing more and more interest in wanting to win tennis matches and wanting to improve everything around him.
“I think when he did what he did in Cincinnati, of course it looks bad and, of course, there are children in the stands and the language is bad, but at least the way he is now in the last weeks, he is showing that he cares.
“Nick wants to win, he hates losing and he wants to play well, he wants to entertain and he simply hasn’t been able to deal with it in a professional way.”
Kyrgios hasn’t reached the quarter-final of a grand slam since January 2015.
The draw for the US Open will will be made on Thursday with the main draw starting next Monday.
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