Women’s No.7 seed and former World No.1 Simona Halep was trailing 1-4 in the first set against China’s Zhang Shuai in her quarter-final clash. However, she recovered remarkably to bag the opening set and subsequently the match as well in straight-sets 7-6(7-4), 6-1 to book a semi-final berth at Wimbledon for the second time in her career.
The Romanian, who rather suffered an early exit at the French Open last month when she was stunned by the American teenager Amanda Anisimova at the quarter-final stage, will now face Ukraine’s Elina Svitolina in her upcoming semi-final encounter at SW19.
At the All England Club, Halep has looked relentless thus far. She has lost just a solitary set en route her second Wimbledon semi-final appearance and has overcome tricky opponents like Victoria Azarenka and women’s teenage sensation, Cori Gauff along her way as she eyes a shot at her potential first-ever Wimbledon title of her illustrious career.
On the other hand, Svitolina, a set down and at 5-5 in the second set, found herself a lucky escape in the second round when her opponent, Russia’s Margarita Gasparyan was forced to retire owing to a sudden cramp. Grabbing the good fortune by her both hands, the 24-year old from Ukraine has marched on thereafter, dropping just a set in her next three rounds to progress to her first ever Wimbledon semi-final.
In fact, her upcoming appearance at the semi-finals at SW19 is her first ever instance of making it to the last four at any Grand Slam Major in her career so far.
Head to Head record
In their seven meetings on WTA tour so far, Svitolina narrowly edges past Halep to lead 4-3. However, all of their previous clashes have been either on clay or hard courts and their forthcoming semi-final showdown at the Wimbledon is their first ever meeting on grass courts.
In their only face-off at a Grand Slam level event, Halep emerged victorious over the Ukrainian in three sets 3-6, 7-6(8-6), 6-0 at the French Open, back in 2017.
At Wimbledon, Halep enjoys a better overall record than Svitolina and will look forward to find a place in the Wimbledon final for the first time in her career, in a bid to claim her first ever title at All England Club.
Svitolina, who had an incredible 2018, where she won four titles including the year-ending WTA finals, however, has failed to bag even a single title in 2019 so far.
Having never made even a quarter-final appearance at the All England Club in the past, Svitolina is already enjoying a remarkable amount of success at this year’s Wimbledon so far and would dearly hope to win her first ever Grand Slam title at the ongoing Championships.
Having faced each other at crucial junctures of various major tournaments of late, a rivalry has been brewing among these two top seeds for a while now. Their rivalry will be resumed yet again when these two women will take courts to find a place in the Wimbledon final on a semi-final Thursday.
No doubt Halep is a champion of a player, but she is prone to choking at major occasions as well. Can the seventh seed Halep prevail over Svitolina to reach her first Wimbledon final or will the Ukrainian continue her dominance over Halep to create a moment of history in her career to find herself a place in her first ever Grand Slam Major final?
The proceedings at SW19 on day 10 of the Championships, Wimbledon will unlock all the answers as anticipation, excitement and expectations soar high in the build-up to Women’s semifinals at the All England Club.
Prediction: Elina Svitolina to win in three sets.