Third seeded Serena Williams will begin the hunt for her 24th Grand Slam when she takes on her fellow American Kristie Ahn in the first round of the 2020 US Open. This match will be played on Tuesday, September 1 and is scheduled to start at around 2.30 pm local time (7.30 pm BST) at the Arthur Ashe Stadium. Get the live streaming options of this Serena Williams v Kristie Ahn match along with its preview, head to head and tips here.
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Serena Williams v Kristie Ahn Head to Head
This will be the first ever match between the ninth-ranked Serena and Ahn, who is her 11 years junior in a competitive set-up.
Williams Gunning for Form Turnaround
Sure this is a first round match against a 97th-ranked opponent but Serena Williams needs a solid turnaround in her form if she wants to look a serious contender for the title here. Because since the return of the sport following its break for the pandemic, Serena has looked out of sorts and that’s putting it mildly.
At the Lexington Open, which was Serena’s first tournament since featuring in the Fed Cup in February, Serena dropped the first set of her opener to Bernarda Pera, repeated that against sister Venus in the second (and was a break down in the second too) before finally falling to Shelby Rogers.
This was followed by an appearance at the Western & Southern Open where for the fourth time in a row, Serena was taken to a third set and had Arantxa Rus serving for the match. She fought back from the brink to win the encounter in a tie-breaker and then took a set lead against Maria Sakkari in the next round.
Unfortunately for her, much like what happened against Rogers, she fell away quickly after to lose the match from being a set up.
The good news for Serena is she has played 15 sets spread across five matches, which means any kind of rustiness would have been long sent packing. The not-so-good news is her struggles – five successive three-setters without making it to the semifinal in either tournament bearing testimony.
Either ways, she is starting off against an opponent whose best ever ranking was 87th, so expecting her to give Serena any scare would be too much of an expectation.
Stanford Graduate Ahn Made a Name at USO
It was at the US Open, Ahn had finally carved her name out with a fine showing. It’s not usual for a top-100 tennis player to also have a degree from Stanford but that’s where Ahn stands at the moment.
At one stage there were question-marks over her choice – tennis over a plus corporate job – but those close seem to have come around, especially after her entry into the fourth round at the 2019 US Open. Ahn had beaten Svetlana Kuznetsova, Ana Kalinskaya and even Jelena Ostapenko to make it to the last 16 there before losing to Elise Mertens.
Earlier in 2019 there was a quarterfinal appearance at the San Jose Open and then at the Seoul Open.
Unfortunately for Ahn, she hasn’t been able to replicate that performance this year with opening round losses at the Australian Open and St. Petersburg Open and one at the Lexington Open after the season resumed. At three other tournaments this year, Ahn has failed to make it past the qualifiers.
Can she put up a decent showing against the six-time US Open winner?
Serena Williams v Kristie Ahn Prediction & Tip
Serena should finally win her first match in straight sets after the pandemic break as she marches into the second round with some sort of a confidence under her belt.
Tip: Serena Williams to win in straight sets: 1/2 (bet365)