Date: August 18, 2022.
Tournament: Western & Southern Open 2022.
Round: Third Round (Round of 16).
Venue: Cincinnati, Ohio, United States.
Category: WTA 1000.
Prize money: $2,527,250.
Match timing: Not before 8:30 pm local time, 12:30 am GMT and 6 am IST.
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel | Canada - Rogers Sportsnet, TSN | UK - Amazon Prime Video.
Aryna Sabalenka vs Shelby Rogers preview
World No. 6 Aryna Sabalenka will take on home favorite Shelby Rogers in the third round of the 2022 Western & Southern Open on Thursday.
Following a first-round bye, Sabalenka was up against qualifier Anna Kalinskaya in the second round. She started the match by saving three break points to successfully hold her serve. Following a hold of serve from her opponent, the Belarusian won three games in a row to go 4-1 up.
Sabalenka held three set points on Kalinskaya's serve at 5-2, but was unable to get the job done. She still managed to clinch the set by serving it out in the following game.
The 24-year-old then snagged an early break to lead 2-0 in the second set. After a few more games, Kalinskaya took a medical time-out for a quick check-up before continuing. Sabalenka secured another break of serve to lead 4-1, after which the Russian retired from the match as she felt dizzy and unwell.
A former semifinalist in Cincinnati, Sabalenka will be aiming to better that result this time around.
Shelby Rogers kicked off her North American hardcourt swing with a runner-up finish at the Silicon Valley Classic. She defeated Bianca Andreescu, Maria Sakkari, Amanda Anisimova and Veronika Kudermetova before losing to Daria Kasatkina.
Rogers then pulled out of the Canadian Open before participating at this week's Western & Southern Open.
Rogers was up against 2020 Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin in the first round in Cincinnati. She put up a commanding performance to defeat her opponent 6-2, 6-1.
Her second-round contest against Anisimova didn't take place as the latter withdrew from the tournament due to an injury, giving her a walkover into the third round.
Rogers will now be aiming to reach her second quarterfinal at the WTA 1000 level in Cincinnati when she takes on Sabalenka.
Aryna Sabalenka vs Shelby Rogers head-to-head
Sabalenka leads Rogers 1-0 in their head-to-head. She won their previous encounter at this year's Libema Open in straight sets.
Aryna Sabalenka vs Shelby Rogers odds
All odds are sourced from BetMGM.
Aryna Sabalenka vs Shelby Rogers prediction
Rogers has three top 10 scalps under her belt this season and will be eyeing a fourth against Sabalenka. The latter's form has been all over the place, but despite some struggles, she's performed well from time to time.
Sabalenka's serve has been the biggest reason why she hasn't performed at a high level. She has hit a tour-leading 310 doubles faults across 37 matches this year. However, in what will come as a massive relief, she only hit four of them in her second-round contest against Kalinskaya.
Rogers, meanwhile, has been playing well in recent weeks. She's no stranger to knocking out higher-ranked players either. The American scored a commanding win over Kenin in the first round and will be eager to back it up.
Despite her serving woes, Sabalenka will definitely fight till the very end. Her groundstrokes remain potent and have helped her overpower her opponents.
The last time these two players met, Sabalenka won a closely contested opening set before dishing out a bagel in the second set. Rogers would've learned from their previous encounter and given her superior form and consistency, she'll be favored to win this time.
Pick: Shelby Rogers to win in three sets.
Also Check Out: Shelby Rogers Net Worth