Noami Osaka vs Cori Gauff - US Open 2019 - Third Round- Preview and Prediction
The best match of the tournament is here as American sensation Cori Gauff takes on Japanese star Naomi Osaka in a blockbuster third-round encounter tomorrow.
Fans were waiting for this match ever since the tournament started and both Gauff and Osaka have done their best in overcoming tricky match situations and avoiding upsets.
It is interesting as both players are known very well for their fighting capabilities and Gauff, being a wildcard, will be up against a wall in the defending champion Osaka.
Gauff came back from the brink in her first two matches. In her US Open debut, Gauff won the battle of the teens against an 18-year old Anastasia Potapova of Russia.
She trailed by a set and a break before producing a Houdini act, winning 3-6 6-2 6-4 leaving the audience in awe.
Gauff was leading by a set and cruising to a straight-sets win. Babos came back strong to take the second set 6-4 to take the match into a decider.
The third set was a cracker as Gauff and Babos played a cat and mouse game with Gauff edging past her 6-4 to clinch the match.
Gauff has the maturity of a veteran though she is just a 15-year old teenager. Amazingly, she has the mental strength of playing in big matches against the best players with a boisterous crowd on the sidelines.
Cori Gauff was the talking point in the Wimbledon this year as she battled past three gruelling rounds of qualifying.
She stormed into the fourth round of the main draw stunning higher-ranked players such as two-time champion Venus Williams, 2017 semifinalist Magdalena Rybarikova and Polona Hercog before succumbing to the eventual champion Simona Halep 6-3 6-3.
On the other hand, Naomi Osaka will have great memories of her spectacular triumph in the US Open last year outplaying 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams 6-2 6-4 in a final marred by the latter's outburst against the umpire.
She showed tremendous calmness under pressure, taking out three seeds- Sabalenka, Keys, and Serena to bag the title.
She continued her great form as she clinched her second slam in a row as she took the Australian Open this year beating five seeds; Hsieh, Sevastova, Svitolina, Pliskova, and Kvitova.
Osaka suffered from inconsistency as she lost early in the three big hard-court tournaments- Dubai, Indian Wells, and Miami. She hit form reaching in the Stuttgart Open only to give a walkover to Kontaveit in the semifinals.
Osaka showed her adaptability to the clay surface reaching back to back quarterfinals in the Madrid Open and Rome Open. Siniakova stunned her in straight sets in the third round of the French Open.
Her poor form continued to torment her as she crashed out early in the two big grass-court tournaments- Birmingham Classic and Wimbledon.
She then issued a statement where she attributed her recent dip in form to her state of mind and she was unable to fulfil the high expectations set on her after her Australian Open triumph which catapulted her to the top of the women's rankings.
She has shown some form reaching the quarterfinals in the Rogers Cup and the Cincinnati Open losing to Americans Serena Williams and Sofia Kenin respectively.
Osaka is yet to hit peak form and has to iron out some flaws in her game. She still has a big positive in her ability to survive the crunch moments in matches.
Meanwhile, Cori Gauff is yet to shift focus to this big-stakes match against Osaka as she is concentrating on her doubles match partnering fellow American- Catherine McNally.
Gauff has already achieved history becoming the youngest woman to reach the third round since Anna Kournikova did it in 1996.
She just cannot think of giving away the first set and try to make a comeback as Osaka never gives chances to her opponents.
In fact, Gauff will have to maintain her composure as she faces both the World Number 1 and the defending champion in Osaka.
The X Factor
Watch out for the excited and energetic crowd enjoying the blaring music as they go out hammer and tongs to support the home girl Cori Gauff.
Osaka did receive some boos after her win against Linette in the second round and can definitely expect some more in the heated encounter. As they popularly say, "Centre Court will be lit folks".
Naomi Osaka to win in three sets