In one of the most anticipated matches of the Australian Open 2019 so far, World No. 1 Simona Halep will be up against the 23 time Grand Slam winner Serena Williams, in the fourth round.
Watch & bet on Simona Halep v Serena Williams live with bet365 here* on Monday, January 21. The Halep v Williams match will start not before 7:00 pm local time (9:00 am BST).
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Halep v Williams Head to Head
Being two of the best players in the world right now, they have crossed paths on the tour many times. In their nine meetings so far, Serena Williams has been absolutely dominating and has subdued the Romanian with ease.
Williams presently leads 8-1, with their last meeting taking place in the quarterfinal of the 2016 US Open. Halep’s sole victory over her American adversary came in the semifinal of the 2015 Indian Wells. It wasn’t a victory as much as a walkover, seeing that Williams withdrew from that fixture.
A Clash Worthy of a Final
Most of their encounters in the past have taken place in the penultimate stages of the competitions. This time around, however, Serena was placed in the same bracket as Halep owing to her seeding as the No. 16.
While Williams has been simply superb throughout her campaign in Melbourne, Halep has had her fair share of struggles and concerns. She survived major scares in the opening stages of the tournament.
Her first round fixture against Kaia Kanepi was a three-set affair which saw Halep being pushed to the limits. In the second round as well, she faced difficulties against the rising American Sofia Kenin. Once again, that match was dragged to three sets with the World No. 1 emerging as the victor. Amidst all of this, there were concerns that Halep is carrying an injury.
She then met Venus Williams in the third round and for the first time in Melbourne, Halep appeared to be extremely confident and clinical. In just an hour and 18 minutes, Halep won the match with 6-2, 6-3.
Serena, on the other hand, has defeated all of her opponents without as much as breaking a sweat. In her three matches so far, she has lost only 9 games in total. However, her adversaries were not as formidable as Halep.
She dispatched the likes of Tatjana Maria and Eugenie Bouchard in straight sets after which, she met Dayana Yastremska. Once again, it was an easy win for the American who won 6-2, 6-1, in a little over an hour. A common point in all of her matches so far has been her impeccable first service. She has also kept her unforced errors count at a minimum that has greatly helped her avoid blunders.
Simona Halep v Serena Williams Tips & Predictions
There is a lot at stake for Halep here – she needs to win this match if she wants to retain her No. 1 ranking. On the other hand, Williams is looking to win yet another Grand Slam and by the looks of it, it is going to be difficult to stop her.
Additionally, Williams holds a pretty intimidating lead over Halep. This, combined with her powerful forehand shots, will trouble Halep a lot throughout the match. The Romanian needs to avoid making unforced errors as much as possible and rely on the shot placement to ask questions of Williams. All in all, this will be an entertaining match where the American will start as the favourite.
You can watch & bet on Simona Halep v Serena Williams live with bet365 here* on Monday, January 20.