Venus Williams will continue her run in the 2019 WTA Birmingham Classic; to face the Chinese Qiang Wang in the second round on Thursday. The match will take place on June 20 and will begin after 5:00 pm local time (5:00 pm BST). Get Venus Williams v Qiang Wang live streaming options with the preview here.
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Venus Williams v Qiang Wang Head to Head
Venus holds a 2-1 lead over her Chinese opponent, last meeting her in the 2018 French Open. Amidst a rather shaky form, Venus lost that match to Wang with 6-4, 7-5.
They have also met on grass once, back in the 2017 Wimbledon. The American lost the first set but won the match eventually in three.
A Slow Season for Venus
Venus Williams is currently playing in her first warm-up tournament to prepare her bid for the SW19. So far, things have gone pretty much according to the plan for her.
In the opener in the 2019 Nature Valley Classic, she dispatched Aliaksandra Sasnovich 6-3, 6-4, in an hour and 26 minutes. It was a decent performance by the former Wimbledon champion, who is looking to make a serious dent this season.
She started the year on a positive run with quarterfinal runs in Auckland and Indian Wells. Later, Williams also made it to the third round in Rome but in Paris, she succumbed to Elina Svitolina in the first round.
With a win-loss record of 12-6, many have speculated that this is Venus’s last season although, only time will tell the truth. In the meantime, she also entered the doubles draw in Birmingham with Harriet Dart but lost in the first round to the pair of Nadiia Kichenok and Abigail Spears.
Wang Making Some Serious Progress
The 27-year-old Qiang Wang is currently World No. 15 – her career-best singles ranking. She is close to breaking into the top 10 and a good run in Birmingham will definitely help her cause.
While she hasn’t been that consistent this season, she had a couple of good runs. Most notably, Wang reached the semifinal in the WTA 125K Series event in Indian Wells and later, the quarterfinal in the Miami Open. She had a really good run there as she defeated Johanna Konta and Serena Williams.
Post that, her form took a slight hit as she failed to move past the early rounds in successive tournaments. To her name, Wang has two singles titles, none of which came on the grass. Interestingly, she reached four finals last season, all of which were in China.
Venus v Wang Predictions & Tips
Given her massive experience, Venus is set to start this match as the favourite. She is a lethal player on the grass courts and so far, has done rather well in Birmingham. At the same time, Wang has an impressive resume and this season, she has already registered a couple of impressive wins. While grass is a different ball game altogether, it isn’t a stretch to imagine her topple Venus.
Tip: Over 19.5 games in the match. (888Sport)