Fixture: Serena Williams vs Kristie Ahn
Date: 1 September 2020
Tournament: US Open 2020
Round: First Round (Round of 128)
Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York, USA
Category: Grand Slam
Surface: Outdoor hardcourt
Prize money: $39,024,000
Match timing: 2.30 pm EDT, 12 AM IST
Live telecast: USA - Tennis Channel / ESPN | India - Star Sports / Hotstar
Serena Williams vs Kristie Ahn preview
Serena Williams is all set to resume her quest for a 24th Major at the 2020 US Open. Having come up short in the finals of the last two editions, she will be looking to finally register that elusive title against a somewhat-depleted field.
Williams enters the Open as the favorite in the absence of defending champion Bianca Andreescu and six other top 10 players, but things are not going to be easy for her. The American, who has been given the third seeding at this year's tournament, will be tested at almost every step - starting with her first round match against compatriot Kristie Ahn.
The 28-year-old will be eager to repeat her breakout performance at last year's US Open, where she made it to her first Grand Slam fourth round.
Ahn, who was a wildcard entrant, really came into her own over the first few days. She was absolutely dominant in her wins over former Major champions Svetlana Kuznetsova and Jelena Ostapenko.
She did follow that up with a quarterfinal appearance at the Korea Open later in the year, but struggled to carry the momentum into the new season. Nonetheless, Ahn would be hopeful of a good showing against Williams, who is coming in on the back of an underwhelming 2020 herself.
Serena Williams vs Kristie Ahn head-to-head
This will be the first meeting between the two women, so the head-to-head currently stands at 0-0.
Williams will need to be wary of her opponent's dangerously understated game. Ahn is a very solid defender and has great strength in her legs, as she showcased in her match against Ostapenko last year. She doesn't mind pace on the ball, and can easily sustain in the longer rallies.
With that sort of an opposition, it always comes down to staying patient and relaxed in rallies - something that Williams has been struggling with lately.
Also check out: The complete 2020 US Open Schedule
Serena Williams vs Kristie Ahn prediction
Serena Williams enters this match with the spotlight firmly on her. She would need to put all that pressure aside for a while and try and take it one match at a time.
Kristie Ahn is a very solid opponent and Williams can make good use of this opportunity to find her best tennis and rediscover some of the lost joy in her game. But if she gets caught in the larger picture and cedes even the slightest of grounds to her younger opponent, she could end up paying a heavy price for it.
Prediction: Serena Williams to win in three sets.Published 31 Aug 2020, 18:52 IST