Aga Radwanska recorded a relatively comfortable 6-1 6-3 victory over Carla Suarez Navarro on Tuesday to advance to her second career semi-final at the Australian Open. Radwanska is arguably in the best condition she has ever been in heading into a Grand Slam semi-final, her fifth Grand Slam semi-final. Radwanska will need to take her game to another level if she is to record her first career victory over Serena Williams at the semi-final stage on Thursday afternoon.
Radwanska produced arguably her best performance of the tournament thus far in her straight set victory over Carla Suarez Navarro on Tuesday. Radwanska waltzed through the opening set with relative ease, maintaining a high first serve percentage, hitting a very low number of unforced errors and taking advantage of the Spaniard’s weak second serve. The second set was a much greater contest as Carla really raised her level and threatened to force a decider when she held to level the set at 3-3. However, Radwanska remained calm and was solid enough to regroup and claim the next three games to book her spot in the semi-finals. Overall, it was a solid performance.
Radwanska is now on a 13 match winning streak and has won 21 of her last 25 matches, Radwanska has won the last three tournaments she has entered, including Tianjin and Singapore last year and Shenzhen in the first week of 2016. The Pole must therefore be feeling as confident as every heading into one of the biggest matches of her career on Thursday afternoon at Melbourne Park.
Radwanska’s head-to-head record with Serena Williams isn’t exactly very encouraging, the Pole has lost all eight of the previous encounters between the pair. However, there are signs that this could be a good opportunity for Radwanska to finally record a victory over the greatest player of all time. Serena’s recent losses have all been against players that have similar strengths to Radwanska (Alize Cornet, Belinda Bencic and Roberta Vinci). I do believe that Radwanska has the ability to really frustrate Serena, she has done so in the past but has been unable to sustain a high enough level for long enough.
Radwanska will enter this semi-final match physically and mentally fresh. Radwanska had a relatively comfortable straight quarter-final victory and has only gone the distance once in the tournament. Therefore, Radwanska is in a position to compete at her best, which is exactly what she would have hoped for heading into a match like this where she needs to play her best tennis to be competitive.
I look forward to see how Radwanska’s goes against the undisputed world number 1. Can she pull off the upset?