World number 16 and Australian Open runner-up Garbine Muguruza will take on Japan’s Nao Hibino in the 2020 US Open on Tuesday, September 1. The match will begin at 11 am local time (4 pm BST). Get the live streaming options of this Garbine Muguruza v Nao Hibino match along with its preview, head to head and tips here.
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Garbine Muguruza v Nao Hibino Head to Head
There have been two previous encounters between Muguruza and Hibino and both of them came in 2016 and on hard court surfaces. In the first, at Doha, Muguruza won 6-2, 6-0 to reach the third round before they faced off again at the Rio Olympics. It wasn’t too much different for either player as Muguruza cruised through 6-1, 6-1 in round two.
Muguruza’s Fitness Remains a Concern
After going through a couple of seasons where Muguruza struggled for form, she began this season on a positive note. The former world number one made it to the semifinal at the Shenzhen Open but the bigger surprise for a lot of those have been watching her over the last couple of years, came at the Australian Open.
Having not made past the fourth round of a Grand Slam since her 2018 French Open semifinal, Muguruza stormed into the final of this year’s Australian Open before losing to Sofia Kenin. And while she would have loved to go the distance, a quarterfinal appearance at both, the WTA Dubai and Qatar Open would have given her confidence for rest of the season.
Except there was no rest of the season. The pandemic struck and the players went on a break before resuming play earlier this month. Muguruza, who hadn’t played a single exhibition match, opted to restart her tennis from the Cincinnati Open but a last minute injury forced her to pull out.
At the time of writing not much is known about the status of her fitness, and whether she would play or not but for now she is in New York and aiming to participate in this US Open opener.
Hibino’s Reached US Open Second Round Only Once
Hibino is one of the four Japanese players in the US Open 2020 draw which is led by Naomi Osaka and she will hope to emulate her best performance at the tournament when she reached the second round in 2017. In fact that opening round win is one of only two matches Hibino has won in a Grand Slam – the other coming in the first round of the Australian Open earlier this year.
This year, Hibino’s otherwise lacklustre season has been lit up a couple of sparkling performances. At the Australian Open where she made it to the second round as mentioned above, she had to go through the qualifiers in which she had to fight through a couple of three-setters. Even in round one, she overturned a set deficit to defeat Shuai Peng.
And then at the Hua Hin Open, Hibino shocked Elina Svitolina for the first and only win over a top-10 player of her career. She made it a far as the semifinals at that tournament.
Since returning to the tour following the pandemic break, Hibino has played only one match and lost that qualifier at the Cincinnati Open. Like Muguruza, therefore, even Hibino might need to adapt back to playing but that Svitolina win and Muguruza’s potential fitness woes give her some hope.
Garbine Muguruza v Nao Hibino Prediction & Tip
We could have a bit of a fight here, even if Muguruza goes on to win it.
Tip: Over 19.5 games in the match: 10/11 (bet365)