US Open Day 10 Women’s Predictions: Serena Williams vs Tsvetana Pironkova and Victoria Azarenka vs Elise Mertens

Day 10 of the US Open sees us wrap up the quarterfinal round. By the end of play Wednesday, we’ll know all four semifinalists. Who will win the final two quarterfinal matches? Let’s look at them, as three mothers will battle on Arthur Ashe stadium. Offering their thoughts on the matches are Jim Smith, David Gertler, Harsh Bhoot, Damian Kust, and myself (Yesh Ginsburg).

US Open Day 10 Predictions

Victoria Azarenka vs Elise Mertens

Head-to-head: First meeting

Jim:
This is perhaps the most intriguing of the four women’s quarterfinals. Both women are in excellent form and will surely view this as a huge opportunity to, at the very least, reach a Grand Slam final. But as impressive as Azarenka has been, there have been signs that she is beginning to run out of steam, hardly surprising after the exertions of the past two-and-a-half weeks. If that is the case, expect Mertens to take advantage.
Prediction: Mertens in 3

David:
Azarenka still hasn’t lost since the beginning of Cincinnati. She recovered well from going a set down to Karolina Muchova and toughed out a tight third set. Mertens made the semifinals of Cincinnati (loss to Osaka) and hasn’t lost a set this week. The question with this match is whether or not Azarenka is going to be able to hit through Mertens very solid baseline play. Given Mertens’ current and how there were a few cracks in Azarenka’s game against Muchova, I give Mertens a slight edge.
Prediction: Mertens in 3

Harsh:
Elise Mertens continued her impressive run taking out the Australian Open champ in a straight forward encounter but she now faces Victoria Azarenka who’s on an equally impressive run if not better. Azarenka has continued where she left off in Cincinnati beating high quality opponents and looks increasingly confident after each match. The baseline rallies should tilt in Azarenka’s favor due to her superior power. Expect a good match with Azarenka being clutch and continuing her impressive run.
Prediction: Azarenka in 2

Damian:
Elise Mertens has been one of the best players after the restart. Her win over Sofia Kenin still came unexpected, as the American seemed to be gearing up with each match. Mertens run should be over here though as she’s going to face probably the world’s best player right now. This sudden improvement of Victoria Azarenka is shocking but she’s kept it up for nine matches now and it’s certainly not a fluke. Her 2nd serve return is still the best in the game and these deep balls directed to the middle are bound to give her a couple of breaks of serve. It’s tough to say how this happened, but Azarenka is not looking like someone who would to lose to Mertens here.
Prediction: Azarenka in 2

Yesh:
This is such a difficult match to predict. Azarenka has the more powerful game and has found a resurgent form in New York this past month. Mertens, though, is playing some of the best tennis of her career, and is calm and confident. Azarenka has shown more cracks in the armor so far this tournament, though Mertens had a touch of nerves at the end of her last match. If those come back, things could get dicey at the end of this one.
Prediction: Mertens in 3

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Serena Williams vs Tsvetana Pironkova

Jim:
This has been some US Open for Pironkova. Playing at her first Major since 2017, the Bulgarian has been a revelation, claiming some excellent wins en route to the last eight. But it is hard to see her getting the better of Williams. The great American has been quietly impressive so far in New York and with the field as open as ever, she looks to be in good position to challenge for that elusive 24th Slam. Don’t expect Pironkova to stand in her way for too long.
Prediction: Williams in 3

David:
Pironkova has been one of the stories of the tournament. Out of the game for so long, she has come back in great form. However, Williams has been on a mission this tournament. Williams’ mentality has been so much better than it was in Cincinnati. She hasn’t been too negative after set losses to Stephens and Sakkari and this spells trouble for the rest of the field. It feels with every match Williams’ huge serve and powerful groundstrokes look a little better. Williams should win this one comfortably.
Prediction: Williams in 2

Harsh:
Tsvetana Pironkova’s dream run continues after a lengthy battle against Alize Cornet. The Bulgarian dropped her serve when serving for the match but recovered well to win. However she’s unlikely to get such a chance again when she takes on Serena Williams. The American would be feeling pretty good about her game after beating Maria Sakkari and should be able to overpower Pironkova. Expect a confident Serena to dictate rallies and get the win.
Prediction: Williams in 2

Damian:
That’s a matchup no one expected to see in 2020. Tsvetana Pironkova has come back to tennis after 38 months of an injury and pregnancy hiatus. She’s been playing fabulous tennis this New York fortnight and has a skillset to disrupt power players. She never defeated Serena though as the best she could do was take a set 13 and 9 years ago. Many years later, Serena’s still going strong though. Her performances in this event highlighted her determination to reach her goals and the ability to raise her level when needed. The American’s ability to get a lot of free points on serve might be the deciding factor.
Prediction: Williams in 3

Yesh:
I have a rule that I often cite here: never pick against Serena Williams. Seriously. It’s a losing proposition. Even when you think she’ll lose, the odds are always against you. So I’ll say this instead. Tsvetana Pironkova is playing better tennis than Serena Williams right now. She just is. I’m picking Serena Williams, as my rule tells me to, but I’m not confident in that decision at all.
Prediction: Williams in 3

Main Photo:
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1 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. Great website! The match against Pironkova could be fascinating to watch. Unlike Federer who is roughly the same age, Serena was getting dangerously slow in her movement over the last couple of years. This still applies. She could get past Pironkova but she is not playing better tennis than Azarenka and Osaka will also have better movement than Serena right now.

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