Kerber vs. Keys
|Date & Time||Tuesday January 23, 2018, 10:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: -- Over/Under:
Madison Keys and Angelique Kerber meet in the quarterfinals of the 2018 Australian Open.
Madison Keys is coming off a straight sets win over Caroline Garcia that took 17 games to decide. In the victory, Keys won 78 percent of her first serve points and 44 percent of her second serve points. Keys was consistent with her service game and hit 32 winners, but it was her five breaks on eight chances that was impressive. Keys has yet to drop a set this tournament and has lost no more than seven games in a single match. Keys could improve her second serve percentage moving forward, but for the most part, the American has been extremely sharp and in control of each performance. Keys has a chance to advance to her third ever grand slam semifinal appearance. Keys is 2-1 in her career in grand slam quarterfinal matches. Keys has won 10 of her last 13 matches on hard court.
Angelique Kerber is coming off a three sets win over Su Wei Hsieh that took 30 games to decide. In the victory, Kerber won 73 percent of her first serve points and 75 percent of her second serve points. Kerber had to earn everything in her fourth round victory, which included breaking three times and winning marathon rally after marathon rally. Kerber showed that she’s mentally strong and back to being in great form, but it’s fair to question how much she has left in the tank after such a draining match that frustrated her to no end. Either way, Kerber always has a shot with her serve being on point the way it has recently. Kerber has a chance to reach her sixth career grand slam semifinal appearance. Kerber is 5-2 in her career in grand slam quarterfinal matches. Kerber has won nine straight matches on hard court.
These two have played seven times and Kerber has won six of those meetings. The most recent match was in the 2016 WTA Championships, a match Kerber won in straight sets. Keys only win over Kerber came in the 2014 Eastbourne International. Kerber has won the last seven sets against Keys. Kerber is also 5-0 against Keys on any form of hard court.
Kerber has the head to head advantage, but these two haven’t played in two years, and Keys is a much more consistent player than she was back then. Keys is far less of the player who goes for broke time and time again, and she does a better job of controlling her unforced errors. I also question just how much Kerber has left after having to pull out all of the stops in her fourth round match, as it can be tough to rebound from such a performance. Kerber will be able to handle the power of Keys better than most, but like nearly all of her matches, the result is always on Keys’ racket. Keep the ball within the lines and Keys wins this contest.
I like the American to advance to the semifinals.