Australian Open, R2 Prediction
?? (1) Simona Halep vs. ?? Sofia Kenin
Simona Halep will need to produce another solid performance if she to continue her quest for the Australian Open title when she takes on America’s Sofia Kenin at the second round stage on Thursday. Halep came through a tough opening round challenge against Kaia Kanepi, the world number 1 was forced to play at a very high level against the Estonian as she battled to a 3 set win from a set and a break down. Halep will likely need to produce a similarly high level to get the better of an in-form Kenin.
I expect Halep to be too strong for Kenin in their first career meeting. I think this is a good match-up for Halep. Kenin is solid, she moves well, she plays with a lot of energy and likes to be aggressive. However, I think Halep does everything better than Kenin and I think Kenin will have a hard time consistently hitting through the world number 1. Kenin has played a lot of tennis over the last couple of weeks, plus this will be one of the biggest matches of her career, fatigue and nerves may be a factor. Conversely, Halep is fresh off a confidence boosting win over Kanepi and will enjoy this match-up where she will be given much more rhythm and opportunity to dictate rallies compared to her opening round match-up.