Simona Halep vs Naomi Osaka, Miami R2 Preview

Miami Open, ???? R2 Match Preview
(3) ?? Simona Halep vs ?? Naomi Osaka

Simona Halep will begin her Miami Open campaign on Friday when she takes on rising-star Naomi Osaka at the second round stage. Simona Halep is yet to get going in 2017, the Romanian has not won consecutive matches in 2017 and will be desperate to win back-to-back matches to gain some much-needed momentum going forward in season 2017.Naomi Osaka looms as a difficult first round opponent for Halep, Osaka has all the weapons to trouble any opponent on her day. This should be an interesting contest.

Simona Halep was struggled to find her best tennis in 2017, an Achilles injury ruined her Australian summer and it has taken some time for Halep to get going in 2017.The Romanian was eliminated in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open last week, Halep defeated Donna Vekic in straight sets in her first round match but was comprehensively out-played by Kristina Mladenovic in the next round, an uncharacteristic performance for Halep who is clearly still not near her best.

Naomi Osaka seems to be hitting some form. Osaka breezed through a couple of matches at the BNP Paribas Open but was no match for Madison Keys in the third round, going down in straights sets. Osaka cruised through her opening match in Miami, beating Kristina Kucova 6-2 6-3. Osaka has been unable to cause a big upset in 2017, this match against Halep seems like a good opportunity to change that.

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Halep won the only previous meeting between the pair, a 4-6 6-2 6-3 in the third round at Roland Garros last year. Osaka is the type of opponent that can trouble Halep because of her extreme firepower from the baseline and behind her serve. Halep is still a bit rusty and Osaka will give her no rhythm. I still doubt that Osaka has the mental strength to finish off a player of Halep’s level, so I will stick with Halep to find a way through this one.

Prediction: Simona Halep to defeat Naomi Osaka in 3 sets

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