Konta vs. Halep
|Date & Time||Wednesday March 29, 2017, 9:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: -- Over/Under:
Simona Halep and Johanna Konta meet Wednesday in the quarterfinals in the 2017 Miami Open.
Simona Halep is coming off a three sets win over Samantha Stosur that took 30 games to decide. In the victory, Halep won 70 percent of her first serve points and 32 percent of her second serve points. Halep continued her shaky 2017 season when she dropped the first set in her last match, but she buckled down defensively and was extremely sharp with her returns. Halep has to improve her second serve if she’s going to break out of her funk and needs to display better body language, as the constant dropping of the shoulders isn’t helping. Regardless, Halep will play in her first quarterfinal match since the Wuhan. Halep has won four of her last six quarterfinal appearances. Halep has won 10 of her last 16 matches on hard court.
Johanna Konta is coming off a straight sets win over Lara Arruabarrena that took 19 games to decide. In the victory, Konta won 78 percent of her first serve points and 73 percent of her second serve points. Konta has dropped just 10 combined games in her last two matches and hopes to make her third semifinals appearance of the 2017 season. Konta has been a serving machine in her last two matches and is on the fast track to becoming a top-10 player again. Konta has 11 career wins over top-10 players with one coming this year against Agnieszka Radwanska in Sydney. Konta has split her last six quarterfinal appearances. Konta has won eight of her last 10 matches on hard court.
These two have played once in the past, which was in the 2015 Wuhan Open, a match Konta won in three sets. The match took 30 games to decide. This will obviously be their second meeting on hard court.
Miami is hitting the jackpot with the women's draw, as this is another solid quarterfinals match that could very well go three long sets. Konta is playing better tennis right now and is probably the safer bet, but I like Halep to find a way. I just think Halep is tired of struggling and is eager to have a breakthrough tournament to kind of get back on track. When playing well, Halep is the better player of the two, at least right now.
While it won’t be easy, I like Halep to find way to move to the semis.