Kerber vs. Halep
|Date & Time||Wednesday June 6, 2018, 11:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: -- Over/Under:
Simona Halep and Angelique Kerber meet in the quarterfinals of the 2018 tennis French Open.
Simona Halep is coming off a straight sets win over Elise Mertens that took 15 games to decide. In the victory, Halep won 63 percent of her first serve points and 70 percent of her second serve points. Halep hit just 13 unforced errors in her victory while winning 60 percent of her return points and producing six breaks. Halep has been near flawless in this tournament and has won eight straight sets, but it’s never been about the earlier matches for the Romanian. It’s about showing up at the later stages and finally getting a grand slam title to her name. Only time will tell if this is the moment for the 26-year-old. Halep hopes to make a semifinal of a grand slam for the third time in her last five tries. Halep is 5-5 in grand slam quarterfinal matches for her career. Halep has won 11 of her last 13 matches on clay court.
Angelique Kerber is coming off a straight sets win over Caroline Garcia that took 17 games to decide. In the victory, Kerber won 76 percent of her first serve points and 67 percent of her second serve points. Kerber won 73 percent of her total service points and had just 13 unforced errors. Kerber has yet to drop a set this series and can make her second grand slam semifinal of the year if she continues to serve the way she did in her last match. After a hit or miss season last year, Kerber is clearly in 2016 form and is a top-five player in the world when she’s playing at this level. Kerber is 6-2 in grand slam quarterfinal matches for her career. Kerber has a chance to reach her first ever French Open semifinal appearance. Kerber has won seven of her last eight matches on clay court.
These two have split the previous 10 meetings with Halep winning the most recent match in this years Australian Open. However, Kerber has won five of the last seven meetings against Halep and is 2-0 on clay against the Romanian. Six of the last nine meetings have been decided in straight sets.
Kerber obviously has the clear head to head advantage over Halep and crushed her in both previous meetings on clay. However, Halep has lost a combined three games in her last three sets and has been simply incredible when playing matches before the final. It’s when the trophy is on the line when Halep falls apart. This slow surface will allow Halep to counter Kerber’s power shots and play more of a defensive, aggressive style.
Halep was my pick to win this tournament, and she’s plying well enough to win this match and keep that bet alive.