Wang vs. Venus
|Date & Time||Sunday May 27, 2018, 11:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: -- Over/Under:
Venus Williams and Qiang Wang meet in the first round of the 2018 tennis French Open.
Venus Williams enters this match in shaky form, as she’s won just eight of her last 14 matches and is just 1-2 on clay court. Venus is coming off a really impressive 2017, but she simply hasn’t been able to find her form yet this year and you have to question if her age is finally catching up to her, as she’ll be 38 years old in a couple of weeks. It’s not easy to consistently beat these younger players day in and day out, especially with the women’s side being as deep as its been in years. Venus is a player to watch closely, as she could be good fade material if the struggles continue. Venus has lost in the first round of a grand slam three times since 2015. Venus has split her last eight matches on clay.
Qiang Wang is just 7-10 on the season, but she is coming off a quarterfinal appearance in Strasbourg and that included pushing Ashleigh Barty to two tough sets. Wang has never been a good clay court player and actually has very little experience on this surface over the years, but she proved last season on hard court that she’s more than capable of being a cinderella type player who can send some quality players home early. It’s all about a fast start and confidence with Wang, as she can be feisty with her return when hitting the ball with a little pep in her step. It’s the second serve that concerns me the most with the 26-year-old. Wang hopes to make the second round of a grand slam for the seventh time in her career. Wang has split her last eight matches on clay.
These two have played twice and Venus has won both matches. The two matches took place in the 2017 Wimbledon and French Open, matches that took a combined five sets to finish.
I’m not running to the window to bet on Venus in her current form, but this is a match she should win. Wang has almost zero success in grand slam play and has never been at her best on clay. If Venus is going to turn her season around, it would be in one of the biggest tournaments of the year. It’s just what the best players in the world do. Find a way.
Venus advances to the second round.