Australian Open ?? Quarter-Final Preview
?? (17) Madison Keys vs ?? (21) Angelique Kerber
Madison Keys and Angelique Kerber will renew hostilities when they meet at the quarter-final stage of the Australian Open on Wednesday. Kerber has dominated this match-up in recent times, the German has won the last 4 meetings between the pair and overall has won 6 of their 7 meetings. Kerber is in imperious form to start the new year, Kerber heads into this quarter-final clash on an unbeaten 13 match winning streak in 2018. However, if anyone can stop Kerber, perhaps it is an red-hot Keys who has stormed through the draw without dropping a set.
Madison Keys has wasted little time in reaching the final 8 in Melbourne. Keys is yet to drop a set this week and has rarely even been challenged in a set. Keys has conceded an average of 4.75 games per match heading into the quarter-final stage. The American has claimed wins over Qiang Wang, Ekaterina Alexandrova, Ana Bogdan and Caroline Garcia. It was Madison’s fourth round 6-3 6-2 demolition of the 8th seeded Caroline Garcia that was her most impressive performance of the tournament.
Angelique Kerber is undoubtedly the form player on tour right now. Kerber cruised into the second week at Melbourne Park with straight set wins over Anna-Lena Friedsam, Donna Vekic and Maria Sharapova. It was at the fourth round stage where Kerber faced her greatest challenge thus far, surprisingly against Su-Wei Hsieh. Kerber struggled against an inspired opponent for the first set and half but ultimately got on top of Hsieh courtesy of a fierce determination and willingness to go for her shots under pressure, Kerber won 4-6 7-5 6-2. Perhaps this as the tough test Kerber needed to move on to achieve the ultimate glory in Melbourne for a second time.
Kerber has got the better of Keys time and time again. Kerber holds a 6-1 record over the American which includes winning the last 4 matches between the pair. Kerber has won all 5 of the previous matches between the pair on a hard court including a 6-3 6-3 victory in Singapore in 2016 in their most recent match.