World number two Simona Halep continues with her Madrid Open 2021 campaign as she faces Zheng Saisai of China in the second round on Sunday, May 2. Get the live streaming options of this Simona Halep v Zheng Saisai match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Simona Halep v Zheng Saisai Head to Head
There have been two previous matches between Halep and Saisai and the world number two has won both of them.
The first of them came at the semifinal of the Shenzhen Open in 2015 while that was followed by another one three years later at Wimbledon in the second round. Both were straight-set wins for the Romanian.
Halep Starts Solidly against In-Form Player
While Sara Sorribes Tormo was shocked in her opener at the Bogota Open in the lead-up to this competition, she has been one of the standout performers of the season so far among those outside the top 20.
Which is why when Halep took her on in the first round in Madrid, she knew she had to get off to a flying start without giving her opponent much of a whiff. And that’s exactly how things turned out for the world number two.
Halep earned herself one break-point in each of first and third games and then another three in the fifth, breaking her opponent thrice and then clinched the set off the first set-point she got.
And while she stumbled a little in the second set as Sorribes Tormo began to show her true colours – the Spaniard came back from 1-5 down to level it at 5-5 – the world number two came through in straight sets, 6-0, 7-5 in an hour and 24 minutes.
The Romanian should be able to dust off her rustiness as the tournaments grows older and that would be a worry for her opponents.
Zheng Sends Linette Out
It hadn’t been the best of seasons for Zheng in the lead-up to this tournament but then again, she was drawn up against Magda Linette who had similar recent issues. In the end, it was Zheng, who had a 5-8 record this season coming to Madrid, who prevailed in a three-setter.
The Chinese world number 57 won 6-2, 3-6, 6-1, in just over two hours of tennis.
The first set went to script for Zheng, who broke twice and had three other opportunities to break Linette in the third game too missed. In the second, it was on serve till 4-3, before Linette carved out a break for herself that was followed by serving for the set to level the match.
Zheng, however, came back to race off to a 4-0 lead and while she was broken once, she retaliated with a third break of the set following which she closed the match on her second match-point.
Doing that to Halep would be something else, but Zheng has had the experience of sending out players like Petra Kvitova, Angelique Kerber, Elina Svitolina, Aryna Sabalenka and Kiki Bertens out in different tournaments. Can she add Halep to her list of scalps?
Halep v Saisai Prediction and Tip
Zheng is 6/1 to win this and given her record this season it’s a surprise Halep is as ‘long’ as 1/10 here. Backing Halep to come through in straight sets.