Australian Open Women’s Preview: Will Serena Win A Sixth Australian Open?
by Sean Randall | January 13th, 2012, 9:24 am
  • 22 Comments

And now for my thoughts on the women’s draw. First, I’ll just say it’s Serena Williams’s tournament to lose. I know she just turned her ankle and she hasn’t played much, but she’s overcome injuries and lack of match play to win before and I see no good reason to doubt her here.

Serena’s 30 now and at her best she simply is the best in the women’s game. At least on hardcourt and definitely at the Australian Open which she’s won the last two times she’s played and five times overall.

As for the draw.

Caroline Wozniacki is again the top seed, but this could be the last time we see the Dane seeded first at a Major for quite some time. With Petra Kvitova breathing heavy down her neck and Serena rounding into form, her reign at No. 1 is about to end, and my guess is it ends here. Wozniacki, who injured her wrist in Sydney this week, opens with testy Australian Anastasia Rodionova, then later Jelena Jankovic in the 16s. If she can get by the Serb I think Kim Clijsters takes her out in the quarters. Clijsters, though, will have the difficult assignment of having to beat Li Na in a too-soon fourth round rematch of their final a year ago. In round two I’ll give a slight edge to Kim and in the end she gets through to the semifinals.

There’s no strong lean in the second quarter but I’ll go chalk and take Victoria Azarenka. The problem I have with the Belarussian who just won Sydney is she doesn’t handle the heat well. And if it gets hot in Melbourne she’ll drop. Literrally. That said, I think her draw is great and I’ll take her to beat Agnieszka Radwanska in the quarterfinals. The Pole won’t have an easy road with Mattek-Sands to start followed by later projected collisions against Yanina Wickmayer and Francesca Schiavone.

In the third quarter we find a host of Russians and Serena. Maria Sharapova is a Australian Open former champion, Svetlana Kuznetsova has won Grand Slams and Vera Zvonareva has played well in Australia, but the three of them are no match for a healthy, focused and fit Serena. Sorry. I think Vera could give Serena the most trouble in the fourth round. Kanepi could also pose a threat. Otherwise, I think Serena blows out Sharapova in the quarterfinals to get the semis.

And who’ll Serena meet in the Final Four? In a very wide open last quarter I’ll pick Kvitova. Petra doesn’t play her best in the heat but in the absence of anyone else I’ll go with the Czech to bounce Sam Stosur again in Australia to make the semifinals. And in doing so she’ll jump past Wozniacki for the No. 1 ranking.

That leaves my last four as Clijsters v. Azarenka and Serena v. Kvitova. And in the final with all she and her family has been through the last year I like Serena to beat Clijsters and get back into the Grand Slam winners’ circle. Hello to “14″ and counting.


Also Check Out:
US Open Women’s Preview: Serena v Maria Final?
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US Open Draws: Women’s Singles Preview
Serena Williams, Azarenka, Yawn: US Open Women’s Preview
2014 US Open Women’s Final Preview: Serena Williams v Caroline Wozniacki

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22 Comments for Australian Open Women’s Preview: Will Serena Win A Sixth Australian Open?

Kimberly Says:

here is my order for most likely women’s champ

1. Serena
2. Kvitova
3. Azarenka
4. Clijsters
5. Sam Stosur
6. Sharapova
7. Na Li
8. Wozniaki
9. Zvonereva
10. Ivanovic

Serena and Kvitova are the heavy favorites although would love one of the blonde screamers to take it home.


Skorocel Says:

I’d say Venus Williams. If not Venus, then Date-Krumm. LOL :-)


Wog boy Says:

It is true, Serene looks scary, but it is long two weeks. I wouldn’t count out Clijsters, Kvitova and , after what I have seen in Sydney, Azarenka. Clijsters was really impressive in Brisbane until injury, strong, moving really well and hammering the balls. Kvitova is playing best tennis at the moment, no need to say anything else. Azarenka produced new quality last night. After second set and brake down in third, when Li Na was all over her she kept composure and won. I wouldn’t count her out. It is long two weeks and Serena might get tired as it happened at USO,it puzzles me why?


Wog boy Says:

One more thing about Azarenka, she had tough two matches, three seters against top players in 24 hours and won, though she was sort of legless in second and beginning of third against Li Na but she recovered.


Kimmi Says:

so far petra does not look like the winner, she is not consistent enough.

The injuries of Kim and serena, not enough matches. Li Na and azarenka are steady enough. stosur looks terrible. i hope it is interesting.


Wog boy Says:

Kimmi, I hope right Kvitova is going to turn up at AO, it will be pitty not to, Clijsters withdrew just to be on safe side, I think so, Serenas injury was the same reason, I think so, again. I don’t see Li Na in final. Have you seen Azarenka in Sydney and what do you think about her game.

Btw, Happy New Year to all posters who follow Julian calendar. Raise your glasses,
CHEERS, NAZDRAVLJE, ZIVELI.
NOLE, Happy New Year, yes you can do it , third AO.


Thangs Says:

Kvitova is my pick


Lou Says:

Williams will win this time. . She has a 89% win rate at AO (Serena Williams, Kim Clijsters & Petra Kvitova- Statistical Precursor to Australian Open 2012: Part 3http://bit.ly/wKcfRi )so far in her career + Kvitova will be under a lot of pressure this time at AO for the no. 1 spot. the only person who can stop her is Stosur maybe.


Lou Says:

Williams will win this time. . She has a 89% win rate at AO (Serena Williams, Kim Clijsters & Petra Kvitova- Statistical Precursor to Australian Open 2012: Part 3 http://bit.ly/wKcfRi )so far in her career + Kvitova will be under a lot of pressure this time at AO for the no. 1 spot. the only person who can stop her is Stosur maybe.


Wog boy Says:

Btw, best Stosur can do is QF , if.


jane Says:

If Azarenka stays well and focused, she can perhaps trouble Serena? I say that based on their match at the USO last summer. While I don’t know how fit Serena was at that point, and while it’s worth noting that the USO court plays faster so it is harder to run down balls, Vika nonetheless took it to Serena in the second set and almost forced a third with momentum on her racquet. The problem was that Vika started slowly in that match so she was trying to catch up. Had she coming out playing like she was when she hit her stride, who knows? I don’t know if the slower, stickier hard court favours Serena or Azarenka were they to meet up.


Kimberly Says:

Sean is right about azarenka and the heat though. She wilted once there. She will drop, literally. And beat Serena, well she looked like she would at 64 40 in 2010 and we all know what happened then. Serena went to all new levels, pounded azarenka serve for outright winners and hit ace after ace. I actually fell asleep with tv on and thought she had lost the march, and woke up after and half awake heard the Espn commentators going nuts over the comeback after the match was over.

None if these women are very consistent. They all can kid of lose anywhere with the men it’s quite different. Realistically there is absolutely no chance Novak djokovic igoing to lose to some long named Russian qualifier we have never heard of but I wouldn’t be checked if half the WTA top ten went out to such a person!


Kimberly Says:

Shocked not checked.

Sharapova, na li, Stosur always capable of deplorable performances and early losses to no namers


Lulu Iberica Says:

I think I am terrible. Out of all the 10 Kimberly listed, there are 3 I do not want to win: Woz, Vika, and Stosur. I’ll be happy if any of the others win. Serena’s my fave, but it is a bit ridiculous if she can just play slams and win! I’d love to see Kvitova become a consistent, regular slam-winning #1.


margot Says:

Have done the challenge and taken Kimberly’s, I think, advice and put anyone with an “ova” in their name through in the early rounds!
Especially Williaova and Cleijsterova….;)


jane Says:

Would love to see Kvitova become consistent too Lulu. Kimberly, yeah I remember that thing with Aza in the heat, although Wog boy mentioned the forecast will be mild. Anyhow, I’d just like to see a new AO champion. Someone who has never won there.


alison hodge Says:

jane vika almost took serena out two years ago,serena was a set and 4 0 down,somehow she managed to dig deep and find a way through,like the greats do,although now shes two years older i wonder if she is as good now as she was then,or a shadow of her former self,and vika looks like a grand slam champion in waiting,still time will tell.


alison hodge Says:

sorry i just repeated kimberlys post.


Wog boy Says:

Dear posters, just google- Long term forecast for Melbourne – and it gives you forecast for next ten days for every six hours, detailed. Very handy, North Americans will have to convert in F. In next ten days it will be two days with temperature around 30 degrees C rest of the days are cooler. Doesn’t look bad, hopefully it will stay like that until the end :)
@Jane, I agree, I would like to see new face in women but not in men’s :)
If my memory is right ( it is not always the case), Azarenka was one set up before she fainted in Melbourne against Serena, and if I am right when Serena was about to do same against Kuznetsova ( Russian had upper hands), organisers suddenly decided to close the roof what gave Serena about 40 minutes to recover, Kuznetsova protested because she was about to finish Serena off. It left bad impession by the organisers, it looked like a double standards. What couldn’t be done for the other players was possible was Serena.


Wog boy Says:

” for Serena” not ” was Serena”


Kimberly Says:

All I know is that sharapova has no chance. It would be nice to see azarenka win, but Williams is Williams. I just think shes a lot better.

Tim Tebow has a better chance tonight than sharapova does to make it past the quarters. At let nadal is a somewhat legitimate contender, enough where I can justify picking him in my bracket. I can’t even justify picking Maria. So I took her out in the quarters.


Kimmi Says:

kimberly – did you create women bracket challenge?

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