Date: 8 April 2022.
Tournament: Charleston Open 2022.
Venue: Charleston, USA.
Category: WTA 500.
Surface: Outdoor clay (green).
Match timing: Not before 1.30 pm local time, 5.30 pm GMT, 11 pm IST.
Prize money: $888,636.
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel | UK - Amazon Prime Video.
Paula Badosa vs Belinda Bencic preview
Second seed Paula Badosa will take on 10th seed Belinda Bencic in the quarterfinals of the 2022 Charleston Open on Friday.
Badosa began the year in thunderous fashion, winning the title in Sydney. She then backed it up with a run to the fourth round of the Australian Open.
However, the 24-year-old struggled to replicate those results once the tour moved to the Middle East. She managed to win just one match across tournaments in Dubai and Doha.
Badosa has once again returned to form in the ongoing North American swing. The Spaniard reached the semifinals in Indian Wells and the quarterfinals in Miami, propelling her to a career-high ranking of No. 3.
Badosa began her campaign in Charleston with an easy 6-1, 6-4 win over Anna Bondar. The second seed was then given a stern test by rising star Claire Liu, but managed to come away with a 3-6, 7-6(8), 6-1 win.
Badosa will now aim to make it to the semifinals in Charleston for the second consecutive year.
Belinda Bencic, meanwhile, didn't make a memorable start to the year. A positive COVID-19 test hindered her as the Swiss struggled in the first few events of the season.
The World No. 21 finally turned her season around in Miami with a run to the semifinals of the WTA 1000 event. She pushed the resurgent Naomi Osaka to the limit before falling in three sets in the last four.
The performance boosted the 25-year-old's confidence and she has carried the momentum to Charleston this week. Bencic faced a spirited opponent in Xiyu Wang in the first round but was able to eke out a three-set victory.
The 10th seed had a much easier time in her next couple of rounds, beating the fast-rising Linda Fruhvirtova and Australian Open semifinalist Madison Keys in straight sets.
The upbeat Bencic will now be eager to record her first-ever win over her nemesis, Badosa.
Paula Badosa vs Belinda Bencic head-to-head
Badosa has a flawless 3-0 record against Bencic. Their most recent meeting was in Sydney earlier this year, with the Spaniard edging the Swiss 7-6(6), 3-6, 6-3.
Paula Badosa vs Belinda Bencic prediction
Badosa's first win over Bencic came right here in Charleston a year ago. It was the Spaniard's first-ever top-20 win and paved the way for her journey to the top of women's tennis.
Badosa has since beaten the Swiss twice more and is the higher-ranked player of the two. She comes into this contest as the favorite to win, given her mastery over Bencic and her good run of form.
Starting out as a grinder, the Spaniard has sharpened her game, adding more aggression and guile. Her backhand is a real asset and has aided in her recent success.
Bencic, on the other hand, hits the ball flat off both wings and is more comfortable on faster surfaces.
That said, fatigue could play a role in this match. Badosa was involved in a marathon in her previous match while Bencic cruised to an easy victory against Keys. But if the Spaniard has recovered fully, she should be able to advance to the semifinals at Charleston once again.
Prediction: Paula Badosa to win in three sets.