Great hope Halep - How far now?

How far will Simona Halep go at the 2014 USO?

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Talk Tennis Guru
Great hope Halep - How far will she advance at the 2014 USO?

What honor: she starts the tournament on Ashe!

Well, yes, consecrated in rankings in a great place at #2, but still a hope, as she looks forward to better results at the USO, after having lost last year in the 4th round to a Penetta in great form.

Her summer HC season has been perforce quite short after the shortened journeys in Cincy and New Haven, so she might not be yet at her best standards in terms of match preparation. However, she looks to be in great physical shape, and I am sure she's rearing to have another go at each of her rivals, including Sharapova. I am sure the unfortunate accident at Wimbledon could have but sharpened her ambition.

Let's get to HC again!

The dreaming and the reflective
[courtesy newpball]

Seeded (2) and in huge progress in terms of GSs, with a final at Roland Garros, a SF at Wimbledon, but with ground to conquer in terms of USO really -- look at past years.

Simona Halep's path at the 2014 USO:

R1: Collins
R2: Cepelova
R3: Muguruza (22)
R4: V. Williams (19)/ Errani (13)
QF: Sharapova (5)/Wozniacki (10)
SF: Radwanska (4) / Kerber (6)
F: S. Williams (1)

To me, this would be a very challenging draw for anyone, starting even with the match with Muguruza, thus the only strategy is being confident, really thinking one match at a time, full focus, by using the first two matches to accumulate more variety than her typical approach through consistenly more net game, stepping into the ball, or slicing, before meeting the big guns.

The major advantage in it: meeting Serena only in the final.

Lemme see: Tignor of sees Wozniacki coming out of Simona's quarter. He was wrong at Wimbledon already :))

Her pre-tournament interview

[go lower in the page to select her interview under Video]

How'dya feel about it ? :)

P.S. Most probably after the tourney, as I don't want to disturb her focus, I'll make Simona aware of this thread. She (herself or her assistants) recently "twitter favored" the other one we had here about her at Wimbledon:
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I am a fan of Halep and I'd love to see her playing the final against Serena. What a great scenario for WTA, having No 1 & No 2 playing in the US Open Final. But I don't see it happening for Simona. Not at this US Open. Considering her HC form so far and her draw filled with big hitters if she makes it to the QF would be great. Beyond that I'll take it as a bonus.
Us open has been very consistent from the women side in recent years where the top players face each other in the final. Whether halep and serena do well and make it to the final just shows how consistent US open is in not having major upsets early in the rounds.
I'm rooting for Halep to get to the finals. It would be doubly awesome for her to take down Maria while getting there. Her hardcourt form has been disappointing so far. I feel as though she has gotten away from what made her fly up the rankings. The easy change of ball direction, the controlled aggression. She seems to be grinding more as opposed to going for her shots. I feel that she was more willing to come to the net at least for swinging volleys. It's as though she got to #2 and is just trying to stay there rather than fight to stay there or go even higher. I really like Simona so I hope she's able bring it all together for the Open.
Halep will have a tough QF and a tough SF if Kerber comes through. If Serena is in the final then the trophy is in Serena's hands unless she has a really BAD day in the final.

My prediction: QF exit for Halep.


Talk Tennis Guru
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Talk Tennis Guru
I suspect QF's MAX for Halep. Hopefully somebody like Muguruza will knock Halep out or if not then Venus or Giorgi. Or if not them then Lisicki or Sharapova.

Sorry, I am not a Halep fan. She is a weak number 2 imo and is no real threat vs the heavy hitters.


Talk Tennis Guru
The read of the ESPN experts on Halep:
5 Women Who Could Become Grand New Champions At US Open

Simona Halep boasts a game far bigger than her diminutive stature, as we saw in both Paris and London. She's a focused player with undeterred resolve. Only Serena has more than Halep's eight titles during the past two seasons. A potential date with Venus Williams in the fourth round of the US Open would be some made-for-TV stuff.

What do you like?

Gilbert: Best mover on the women's tour. She has sneaky power for her size at 5-foot-6. She also has an underrated serve. Her backhand is one of the best in the game.

Shriver Just about everything except her size. I love her footwork, her backhand, her forehand, her tenacity and her improved emotional consistency. I like the way she constructs points. I love the way she embraced the French Open final. The end result wasn't what she wanted, but she was one of the most positively reflective finalists we've had in women's tennis in years.

What don't you like?

Gilbert: She probably doesn't have that one big kill shot.

Shriver: Because of her size, her serve isn't a consistent weapon. She's small in stature but still has decent power. In this day and age in tennis, size does mean a lot. Through footwork and through her court savviness and point construction, Halep needs to make sure she keeps turning her size disadvantage into a positive and not a liability. Most of the women who have won majors in the past 10 to 20 years have done so with power being the main stamp of their game.

What do you expect in New York?

Gilbert: She's the No. 2 seed, so anytime you're the No. 2 seed, expectations have to be high. But she's proved she can win anywhere, against almost anyone. I don't see that changing at the US Open.

Shriver: She could end up winning her first major in New York. She can play really well on all surfaces. Look, all these first-timers are hindered now that Serena has played so many matches and heads into the Open with more confidence than she has in any other Slam this season. That's the way it is, but with Halep on the other side of the draw as Serena, she won't have to worry about that until the last day of the women's draw, if she makes it that far.
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Danielle Rose Collins has beautiful on-court hair. Her leopard-print wristbands are notable. The "live" stream commentators repeatedly say her full name over and over and over. But it's her hair that stands out for sure.

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Talk Tennis Guru
Halep needs to step in, even when she retreats, the last step needs to be a step toward the ball. Too frequently, she executed shots from her heels.


Talk Tennis Guru
Well, Classy Garbine, the one and only, the Regal,

Garbine Muguruza 3 6 4
Mirjana Lucic 6 7 7

is out of Simona Halep's path.

And Venus didn't look great either.


Talk Tennis Guru
[edited] And Alexandra Dulgheru might have a chance at making Simona Halep a service by taking out Sharapova in her round 2:

Kristyna Pliskova 3 4
Alexandra Dulgheru 6 6
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Talk Tennis Guru
Another bomb on Halep's path, after Muguruza, the most technical player after Halep, IMO, is gone:

Shuai Peng 6 6
Agnieszka Radwanska 3 4

Let's hope she knows how to use the opportunity.
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Talk Tennis Guru
Cepelova beat Serena this year
but is of the same height with Halep

She breaks Halep, who breaks back
1-2 on serve, Halep
Long rallies, Cepelova no pushover

Virginia Wade commentating: Halep reminds her of some of the greatest players, such as Kim, with her very neat hitting off the ground; Fissett thus should be a good coach for her (I am not so sure)

2-2 30-40 on Cepelova, but Halep hits bad from her heels into the net: bad habit
but finally breaks C.
3-2 Halep, 1 break up
3-2 30-15, Halep backs off from net and loses point: another problem (Wade is with me on this one)
but Halep is good enough to go

Halep looks very decisive at this point,
steps in in several shots (as I've recommended), and breaks again

5-2, Halep serves for the 1st set.
2 aces, good serving
6-2 she's clearly playing herself in great form
but no variety for now: no slices, dropshots, volleys.

Not much of a crowd on Amstrong, disappointing. Great, sunny weather.

Halep: FH problem: "arms" too much the ball, say in reverse FH, doesn't move the body enough into it, the stepping in, the translation motion isn't there enough; you can do that even in open stance
(Wade thinks she advances great into the ball: I don't agree, there's a huge place for improvement there)

Halep opens well the court today, by using both FH and BH for
then breaks for
2-1, one break up

Great net play, smash, volley, for
3-1 Halep
that's what I want to see much more, not just once in 30 min

Break points won: 5/8 very good
breaks again for
4-1 Halep to serve
this is done and dusted

5 aces (Wade: that's a lot)
service game at love
Wade: Halep, a very well oiled machine out here; very impressive performance

On court-interview: being #2 is a difficult situation to manage, I just have to do it; happy to finish quickly, as it's hot there.

She's just served a serious notice.
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Talk Tennis Guru
Another bomb on Halep's path, after Muguruza, the most technical player after Halep, IMO, is gone:

Shuai Peng 6 6
Agnieszka Radwanska 3 4

Let's hope she knows how to use the opportunity.
What does Radwanska have to do with Halep? Halep will probably have to face Venus Williams long before worrying about anybody in the third quarter and Halep has never defeated Venus.


Talk Tennis Guru
Venus never really played peak Halep :)Its should be 70-30 for the romanian
Yes, but by the same token, Venus is playing a lot better and is in much better form than she was the last time she played vs Halep a couple of years ago. I think if Venus is not too fatigued Venus should take it. Venus' power should overpower Halep.
Halep may have to face Venus first though and the fact is that Halep has never defeated Venus in three attempts. Does not mean she won't beat Venus now but h2h's matter as we have all seen time after time.
Venus is outdoing herself if she gets to the 4th round. Can't expect much more than that
I am not so sure about that. Their h2h is 5-5. Normally I would say you are right, but Venus' form has been better the past month or so than Sharapova's form.
The H2H is 5-3 Sharapova,4-1 on hardcourts. I don't think you can count on anything with Venus,a 4th round would be a great result for her...


Talk Tennis Guru
The H2H is 5-3 Sharapova,4-1 on hardcourts. I don't think you can count on anything with Venus,a 4th round would be a great result for her...
Yes, sorry I was looking at this and counting those Hong Kong matches:

However, I still feel that if Venus is not too fatigued and can make it to Sharapova(if Sharapova makes it that far) it could go either way given Sharapova's iffy form right now.