Fixture: Victoria Azarenka vs Ons Jabeur
Date: 26 August 2020
Tournament: Western & Southern Open 2020
Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York, USA
Category: WTA Premier 5
Surface: Outdoor hardcourt
Prize money: $1,950,079
Match timing: 3 PM EDT, 12:30 AM IST
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel / ESPN
Victoria Azarenka vs Ons Jabeur preview
Victoria Azarenka has made it to the quarterfinals or better of a Premier event every year since 2008, with the exception of 2017 when she took a pregnancy break. And her steak will remain unbroken heading into 2021.
Azarenka battled past France's Alize Cornet on Tuesday to make it to the last eight at the 2020 Western & Southern Open with a 6-4, 7-5 win. But the former Cincinnati champion's task will only get tougher as she next goes up against Tunisia's Ons Jabeur, who is playing some of the best tennis of her career.
Jabeur turned plenty of heads at the Australian Open earlier this year, where she made her first ever Major quarterfinal. Her solid run continued through the Middle East, where she was only stopped by the likes of Simona Halep and Petra Kvitova.
The Tunisian talked extensively about her high expectations heading into the US Open during her pre-match interviews in New York. By the looks of things, she is feeling confident about her game and eyeing another deep run at next week's Major.
Jabeur's on-court performances back that up too. She has been incredible in her wins over strong opposition, and has found a serving form second to none this week.
That aspect of her game will be tested against Azarenka, who is one of the best returners that the women's game has ever seen.
Victoria Azarenka vs Ons Jabeur head-to-head
This will be the first ever meeting between the two women, so the head-to-head currently stands at 0-0. And while it is Ons Jabeur who has been more successful this season, she still remains the underdog in this matchup.
Victoria Azarenka is a two-time Slam champion, and knows what it takes to triumph in big matches. Jabeur will have to extra hard to keep her nerves at bay given the stage, but for Azarenka that is second nature.
Ons Jabeur vs Victoria Azarenka prediction
There was a time when Azarenka was an absolute force of nature on hardcourts, winning Majors and Premier Mandatory events regularly. But the Belarusian hasn't reached a big final for more than three years now.
The hardcourt surface remains her best bet at returning to the top level. She has her work cut out in this match though given Jabeur's form, and will need to make early inroads into the Tunisian's service games.
This may be a new experience for Ons Jabeur, but she seems ready to take the next step.
Prediction: Ons Jabeur to win in three sets.Published 26 Aug 2020, 15:07 IST