US Open Women’s Preview: Serena v Maria Final?
World No. 1 Serena Williams has a last chance to win a Grand Slam during the coming fortnight at the US Open, having been shut out of the Australian, French and Wimbledon.
But Serena’s road starting next week will be anything but easy.
After an opener that should be a walk-through against the young American Taylor Townsend, her road will then go through former French Open winner Francesca Schiavone, in the fourth round former US Open winner Sam Stosur, and in the quarterfinals former No. 1 Ana Ivanovic.
Serena’s semifinal opponent will be a mystery, with the second quarter of the draw containing struggling No. 7 seed Eugenie Bouchard, struggling No. 3 seed Petra Kvitova, and fellow seeds Svetlana Kuznetsova, Madison Keys, and the struggling back-from-injury Victoria Azarenka.
The bottom half of the draw will likely be a battle between Maria Sharapova, Aggie Radwanska and world No. 2 Simona Halep to emerge into the final.
Radwanska and Kerber are the high seeds in the third quarter of the draw.
Kerber’s draw is pretty cake-like, with Sloane Stephens or former No. 1 Jelena Jankovic lurking in the fourth round. Radwanska you can pencil into the quarterfinals for a meeting with Kerber, if she can make the appointment.
The bottom quarter of the draw is loaded with land mines for top seeds Halep and Sharapova.
Halep begins against American wild card Danielle Collins, the recent NCAA singles champion, with a fourth round meeting with seeds Venus Williams or Sara Errani lurking. Sharapova will have an interesting start against fellow Russian Maria Kirilenko, with seed Sabine Lisicki lurking in the third round.
If Caroline Wozniacki can hold her current form, a fourth-round meeting with Sharapova should be in the works.
Prediction: Another Serena vs. Maria final, with Sharapova getting a chance to improve her record against a player who will have the weight of the world on her shoulders.
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