Saturday, January 23, 2010

Australian Open: Women's Second Week Preview

Serena Williams (1) v Samantha Stosur (13)
Victoria Azarenka (7) v Vera Zvonareva (9)
Caroline Wozniacki (4) v Na Li (16)
Venus Williams (6) v Francesca Schiavone (17)

Justine Henin BEL (W) vs. Yanina Wickmayer BEL (Q)
Nadia Petrova RUS (19) vs. Svetlana Kuznetsova RUS (3)
Alona Bondarenko UKR (31) vs. Jie Zheng CHN
Maria Kirilenko RUS vs. Dinara Safina RUS (2)

Everyone is keeping an eye out for a possible all-Williams semifinals in the top half of the draw while the Belgians and the Russians are still all over the bottom part of the draw despite some huge upsets earlier in the tournament in the form of Elena Dementieva, Kim Clijsters, and Maria Sharapova.

Serena is in top form losing only three games in her first three matches. She's not the only top seed to not lose a set since Safina, Wozniacki, and Venus have also not dropped a set. Safina especially as the #2 seed has flown pretty much under-the-radar.

The story, however, is Justine Henin and her comeback. This is just her second tournament and she's in the round of 16s. She should be able to win against her compatriot, but then most likely need to go up against two top 4 players before meeting a Williams sister in the finals.

Prediction: I'll stick with my initial prediction of Serena Williams winning against Caroline Wozniacki in the semifinals. I have to adjust my bottom half prediction since my semifinal prediction between Clijsters and Jankovic was sort of derailed. Instead Justine Henin will beat Dinara Safina. Serena vs. Justine in the finals with Serena gutting it out.

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