Serena Williams vs. Qiang Wang, US Open QF Preview

🇺🇸🗽🍎 US OPEN, QF match preview
🇺🇸 (8) Serena Williams vs. 🇨🇳 (18) Qiang Wang

Serena Williams continues her quest for an elusive 24th Grand Slam title on Monday night when she takes on China’s Wang Qiang at the quarter-final stage of the 2019 US Open. The pair bring hugely contrasting experience into this match, Williams will be competing in her 52nd Grand Slam singles quarter-final whilst Wang will be making her first ever appearance at this stage of a major.

Serena Williams is seemingly getting stronger and stronger as the tournament rolls on in New York. Williams started her campaign with a 6-1 6-1 drubbing of Maria Sharapova before being forced to fight from a set down to beat Caty McNally. The 23-time major winners struggle against McNally was seemingly a wakeup call. Williams has produced two improved performances to secure a spot in the final 8 with straight set wins over Karolina Muchova and Petra Martic. Williams has consistently come across unfamiliar opponents in New York, her match with Wang will be a fourth consecutive first-time matchup for Williams, a rarity given her experience.

Qiang Wang is on the verge of cracking the WTA top 10 for the first time having reached her first major quarter-final. Wang has had a good few weeks in New York having arrived at Flushing Meadows fresh from a semi-final showing in the Bronx. Wang is yet to drop a set this tournament, Wang cruised through the first week with wins over Caroline Dolehide, Alison Van Uytvanck and Fiona Ferro. Wang made her biggest move in the fourth round where she upset the 2nd seeded Ash Barty with a 6-2 6-4 win. Wang was amazingly clutch in her win over Barty, the Chinese number 1 saved all 9 break points she faced against the Aussie to claim the biggest win of her career.

This will be the first career meeting between Serena Williams an Wang Qiang.

Obviously it is Serena Williams who rightfully heads into this match as a strong favourite. The record of Williams speaks for itself but Wang will be no pushover, Wang is playing the best tennis of her career and has nothing to lose heading into this match. Wang absorbs pace very well, she likes playing against big hitters so it will be interesting to see how she matches up against Williams. I think this will be much closer than expected, Wang can match Williams from the baseline, tempted to pick Wang but the experience of Williams and her superior serve will likely win out in the end.

Prediction: Serena Williams to defeat Qiang Wang in 3 sets

Qiang Wang vs. Bianca Andreescu, Indian Wells R4 Preview

🇺🇸🌵 BNPPO19, Indian Wells – R4 Preview
🇨🇳 (18) Qiang Wang vs. 🇨🇦 (wc) Bianca Andreescu

Qiang Wang and Bianca Andreescu will go head-to-head for the first time with a spot in the BNP Paribas Open quarter-finals up for grabs. This is a huge opportunity for both players to reach the final 8 of premier mandatory event, who will step up and make the most of this opportunity?

Bianca Andreescu of Canada in action during her third-round match at the 2019 BNP Paribas Open WTA Premier Mandatory tennis tournament

Qiang Wang has made a mediocre start to the season given her outstanding form towards the end of 2018. However, the recent signs have been better for Wang, perhaps she is rediscovering her late 2018 season form. Wang has had a good couple of weeks in Indian Wells, it all started a few weeks ago at the Indian Wells 125K event where she reached the semi-finals. Wang has claimed a few solid victories on route to the fourth round of the BNP Paribas Open, a 7-6 6-2 win over Bernarda Pera followed by a gutsy 7-6 6-7 6-3 win against Elise Mertens.

Bianca Andreescu is in the best form of her career. The 18-year-old is quickly rising up the WTA rankings, she arrived in Indian Wells on the back of a semi-final showing in Acapulco which saw her rise to a career high ranking of 60, one more win for Andreescu this week and she will almost certainly break into the top 50. Andreescu started her BNP Paribas Open campaign with a surprisingly tough 6-7 6-3 6-3 win over Irina-Camelia Begu before cruising past Dominika Cibulkova and Stefanie Voegele in straight sets.

It will be interesting to see how Wang matches up against young Canadian in their first career meeting, especially with so much on the line, will youth or experience prevail?

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Ashleigh Barty vs. Qiang Wang, Zhuhai Final preview + prediction

🇨🇳 WTA Elite Trophy Zhuhai – Final preview + prediction
🇦🇺 (9) Ashleigh Barty vs. 🇨🇳 (11) Qiang Wang

Saturday’s final in Zhuhai sees the 9th seeded Ashleigh Barty take on the 11th seeded Qiang Wang. Barty and Wang will both be playing to win the biggest title of their respective careers and end the 2018 season on the ultimate high. Wang received a second chance in the tournament when Madison Keys withdrew before her semi-final match with Garbine Muguruza, Wang certainly made the most of that opportunity by smashing Muguruza to reach the final in front of an adoring home crowd.

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It was Ash Barty who won the only previous match between the pair, a 7-5 6-4 win for Barty in Strasbourg earlier this year. I expect a very different result here, I’m going to side with Wang. Wang has been extremely impressive over the last couple of months and should have the slight edge here. Wang has significantly improved her serve and that will be key to victory here. If Wang can match Barty’s serving she should win as it is Wang who has the more dynamic game from the baseline, greater endurance and a greater return of serve. Wang has been particularly strong in China this year so it would be a fitting end to the season if she wins here.

Prediction: Qiang Wang to defeat Ashleigh Barty in 3 sets

Madison Keys vs. Qiang Wang, Zhuhai RR preview + prediction

🇨🇳 WTA Elite Trophy Zhuhai – RR preview + prediction
🇺🇸 (6) Madison Keys vs. 🇨🇳 (11) Qiang Wang

Madison Keys and Qiang Wang will renew hostilities when they do battle in the final match from the Camelia group in Zhuhai. Keys has had the wood over Wang, the American has won both of the previous matches between the pair, both in straight sets, both on a hard court earlier this year. Keys won her match first match of the week over Daria Kasatkina in straight sets whilst Wang was defeated by Kasatkina in 3 sets, it all comes down to this, Wang will need to win in straight sets to stand a chance of progressing whilst a win for Keys guarantees her place in the semi-finals, Keys can still progress even if she loses.

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I’m going to side with Wang here. Of the two, it is Wang who has been in the far better form of late despite her loss to Kasatkina the other day. Keys did beat Wang in straight sets in both of their previous matches but Wang has improved significantly since then. A tired Kasatkina offered little resistance for Keys, Wang will be a much tougher test. There are still some injury concerns with Keys and I question her ability to get through a tough, physical match, which Wang should be good enough to force. I think Wang has one last fight left in her and will end a great year on a high in front of her home crowd.

Prediction: Qiang Wang to defeat Madison Keys in 3 sets

Daria Kasatkina vs. Qiang Wang, Zhuhai RR Preview

WTA Elite Trophy, Group Stage: 🇷🇺 (1) Daria Kasatkina vs. 🇨🇳 (11) Qiang Wang

The first night session match of the 2018 Elite Trophy Zhuhai is an exciting encounter between the top seeded Daria Kasatkina and China’s number 1 Qiang Wang. Kasatkina and Wang both arrive in Zhuhai full of confidence given their recent successes. Expect a high quality match.

Qiang Wang of China in action during her semi-final match at the 2018 Prudential Hong Kong Tennis Open WTA International tennis tournament

Daria Kasatkina arrives in Zhuhai on a high having won the Kremlin Cup a few weeks ago. As a result of winning the Kremlin Cup, Kasatkina was the first alternate in Singapore where she has been training over the last week but did not get the opportunity to play a match. Kasatkina’s title run at home in Moscow was a big relief for the Russian having generally been in poor form during the second half of the year and having lost her 3 previous finals. Kasatkina will be competing in Zhuhai for the first time, with the added pressure of being the top seed.

Qiang Wang has been one of the form players on tour over the last few months. Wang originally received a wild card event but ultimately qualified on her own merits because of her great recent form. Wang has won 19 of her last 23 matches and has reached at least the semi-final stage in all 5 of her most recent events. It is clear that Wang is a player on the rise under the guidance of Peter McNamara. At home, in China, it will be interesting to see if Wang can continue to shine and potentially become the first Chinese player to win this title. This will be the first time Wang has competed in Zhuhai.

Kasatkina holds a 3-1 head-to-head record over Wang. The most recent match between the pair took place earlier this year in Madrid, Kasatkina won 7-5 7-6. The three prior matches between the pair all went the distance, this has proven to be tight match-up.

To view my analysis / prediction for this match: Click here

Yulia Putintseva vs. Qiang Wang, Roland Garros R3 Preview

🇫🇷 Roland Garros, R3 Preview
🇰🇿 Yulia Putintseva vs. 🇨🇳 Qiang Wang

A huge opportunity presents itself to Yulia Putintseva and Qiang Wang when the pair meet at the third round stage at Roland Garros on Friday. This is rare territory for Putintseva and Wang, Putintseva will be aiming to reach the second week of a Grand Slam for the second time whilst Wang will be playing to reach the second week of a Grand Slam for the very first time. Who will step up an make the most of this opportunity?

Yulia Putintseva of Kazakhstan in action during her first-round match at the 2018 Roland Garros Grand Slam tennis tournament

Roland Garros is proving to be a happy hunting ground for Yulia Putintseva yet again. Putintseva had the best tournament of her career in Paris in 2016 when she reached the quarter-final stage in what was the only time Putintseva has reached the second week of a Grand Slam. The Kazakh is now in a great position to emulate that run after comfortable straight set wins over Johanna Konta and Jennifer Brady in the first two rounds. The draw is open for Yulia to again reach the final 8 in Paris.

Qiang Wang has already broken new ground in Paris. Wang is into the third round at a Grand Slam for the first time, surprisingly it has happened in Paris on her least preferred surface. Wang has claimed two big upset wins to reach the third round, a 6-4 7-5 win over the 9th seeded Venus Williams before crushing Petra Martic 6-1 6-1 in what was very surprisingly one-sided match.

This will be the first career meeting between Putintseva and Wang. Both will see this as a very winnable match, a big opportunity to reach the round of 16 at Roland Garros, Who wins?

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Petra Martic vs. Qiang Wang, Roland Garros R2 Preview

Roland Garros, R2 Preview
🇭🇷 Petra Martic vs. 🇨🇳 Qiang Wang

Petra Martic and Qiang Wang will go head-to-head for the first time when they meet at the second round stage at Roland Garros on Wednesday. The draw has opened up nicely for these two, the winner of this match will face either Yulia Putintseva and Jennifer Brady in the next round, both Martic and Wang would see either of those potential opponents as very beatable meaning both have a great chance to reach the second week in Paris.

Wang Qiang of China in action during her first-round match at the 2018 Roland Garros Grand Slam tennis tournament

Petra Martic has reached the second week at the 3 of the last 4 Grand Slam events. Martic is now in a favourable position to reach that spot again in Paris. The Croatian started the event with a comfortable 6-2 6-3 victory against China’s Yafan Wang. Martic has been extremely consistent in 2018, almost always winning the matches that she is expected to win, a good habit to have.

Qiang Wang caused one of the biggest upsets on day 1 in Paris as she defeated the 9th seeded Venus Williams 6-4 7-5. Wang’s victory over Venus was undoubtedly one of the biggest wins of her career and it was just her second main draw victory at Roland Garros.

Martic and Wang will both view this is a winnable match, both are very consistent players so we should expect a tight match here. Who will prevail?

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Simona Halep vs Qiang Wang, Indian Wells R4 Preview

BNP Paribas Open, 🇺🇸🌴 Indian Wells R4 Preview
🇷🇴 (1) Simona Halep vs. 🇨🇳 Qiang Wang

Simona Halep continues her 2018 BNP Paribas Open campaign on Tuesday with a round of 16 clash against China’s Qiang Wang. The world number 1 and 2015 Indian Wells champion will head into this fourth round clash as a strong favourite in what will be the first career meeting between the pair. Halep will be determined to have a much more straightforward victory compared to her scare in the previous round.

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Halep survived a real scare in her third round clash at the BNP Paribas Open. The Romanian came from a set down to defeat American wild card Caroline Dolehide 1-6 7-6 6-2. Halep was outplayed for the first set and a half before eventually waring down her young opponent to avoid a big upset. Prior to that, Halep received a bye through the opening round before claiming a 6-4 6-4 win over Kristyna Pliskova. Halep has been very consistent in 2018 and has come through some tough situations, winning matches that she would have lost in the past, such as her match against Dolehide on Sunday.

Qiang Wang is having her best tournament of the season thus far. Wang started the event with a couple of 3 set victories over Timea Bacsinszky and Elise Mertens. Wang confirmed her spot in the fourth round of the first premier mandatory event of the season with a 6-1 6-2 victory over the 14th seeded Kristina Mladenovic. Wang was yet to really get going in 2018 before arriving in Indian Wells. Her run to the round of 16 is just the spark she needs to ignite her season.

This will be the first time Halep and Wang have gone H2H, who will emerge victorious?

To view my Analysis / Prediction for this match: Click here

Kristina Mladenovic vs Qiang Wang, Indian Wells R3 Preview

BNP Paribas Open, 🇺🇸🌴 Indian Wells R3 Preview
🇫🇷 (14) Kristina Mladenovic vs. 🇨🇳 Qiang Wang

An interesting third round clash from the Californian desert sees the 14th seeded Kristina Mladenovic take on China’s Qiang Wang at the BNP Paribas Open. Wang has proven to be a very troublesome opponent for Mladenovic, Wang thrashed Mladenovic 6-0 6-0 in Tokyo last year in what was probably the low point in Mladenovic’s career. The Frenchwoman has turned her fortunes around of late, the 2017 Indian Wells semi-finalist will head into this match with a point to prove.

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Mladenovic’s slump seems to be behind her. Mladenovic has had some good results of late, including a run to the final in St. Petersburg and more recently a quarter-final showing in Acapulco. Mladenovic received bye through the opening round in Indian Wells before confirming her spot in the third round with a 7-5 7-5 win over Sam Stosur. It was a gutsy win for Mladenovic, especially her effort in the second set given she faced break points to go 1-5 down before recovering to close out the match in straight sets.

Qiang Wang booked her place in the third round at the BNP Paribas Open courtesy of a couple of hard-fought 3 set victories. Wang started the week with a topsy-turvy 6-0 4-6 6-2 win over Timea Bacsinszky before coming from a set down to upset the 22nd seeded Elise Mertens 4-6 6-3 6-3. Wang’s win over Mertens was her best win of the season thus far, a confidence boosting win for the 26-year-old.

Wang has won both of the previous matches between the pair, both in straight sets, both on a hard court in 2017. A 6-1 6-4 win in Dubai and a 6-0 6-0 win in Tokyo.

To view my Analysis / Predictions for this match: Click here

Madison Keys vs Qiang Wang, Australian Open R1 Preview

Australian Open 🇦🇺 R1 Preview
(17) 🇺🇸 Madison Keys vs 🇨🇳 Qiang Wang

An interesting opening round clash at Melbourne Park sees Madison Keys come up against China’s Qiang Wang. Madison Keys is one of many serious contenders to claim a maiden Grand Slam title in 2018. Keys came agonizingly close to winning that maiden Grand Slam title in 2017 when she reached the final at the U.S Open. Keys is yet to win a match since reaching the U.S Open final and will face a tough early test in Melbourne against Wang, a very solid, consistent opponent.

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Madison Keys was unable to compete at the Australian Open in 2017 due to injury. Keys will be excited to be back in Melbourne, the scene of her first major breakthrough at a Grand Slam. Keys made it through to the semi-finals at Melbourne Park in 2015. Keys does not have good form heading into this event having not won a competitive match for months. There is no doubt that Madison’s best tennis is up there with the best, however her worst tennis is bad enough to make her vulnerable at these early stages of the first Grand Slam of the year.

Qiang Wang played in just 1 event in the lead up to Melbourne. Wang suffered a surprise opening round loss in Shenzhen, beaten by Alison Riske in straight sets. The quick hard courts in Melbourne should favour the game of Wang, the Chinese woman has struggled on the big stage and would like to change that in 2018. A match with Keys in the opening round in Melbourne is the perfect opportunity for Wang to claim a big scalp at a major event.