Venus Williams vs Elina Svitolina - US Open 2019 Preview and Prediction
World Number 52, Venus Williams, locks horns with the World Number 5, Elina Svitolina, in a mouth-watering second-round clash tonight.
At the age of 39, Venus has continued to inspire the next generation of tennis players. Longevity has been the hallmark of Venus Williams so far and the fact that she is playing in her 21st US Open is testimony to that. Svitolina has been one of the good players on the tour blessed with abundant talent and has every weapon in her game to beat the big names.
Venus Williams is a two-time champion here and knows the conditions in and out. Last year, she was humbled by her younger sister- Serena Williams 6-1 6-2 in a one-sided third-round encounter. She started afresh this year reaching the quarterfinals of the Auckland Open, Indian Wells, Birmingham Classic and the Cincinnati Open.
"Form is temporary, class is permanent" is an apt description of Venus Williams as she has beaten some good players such as Azarenka, Kvitova, Kasatkina, Mertens, Sasnovich, Bertens and Vekic. Venus's massive experience has helped in pulling her out of precarious circumstances in some of the matches.
While she has impressed everyone with her decent performances in other tournaments, her run in the slams is not satisfactory having crashed out in the third round of the Australian Open, the first round of the French Open and the Wimbledon. She will be looking to have a deep run at this tournament.
On the other hand, Elina Svitolina won the biggest title of her career when she clinched the WTA Finals last year beating some of the best players on the tour (all in the top 10) - Kvitova, Pliskova, Wozniacki, Bertens, and Stephens. She also had an all-win record in the tournament and was unstoppable.
She reached the quarterfinals in the Australian Open, Silicon Valley Classic and Rogers Cup this year. Svitolina had a great purple patch as she reached back to back semi-finals in three tournaments in a row in Qatar Open, Dubai Open, and Indian Wells. There was a plunge in form after that dream run as she crashed out early in Miami, Madrid, Rome, and the French Open in a poor clay-court season for her.
In the run-up to Wimbledon, she exited soon in the two warm-up tournaments - Birmingham Classic and the Eastbourne Championships. Svitolina bounced back reaching the semi-finals in the Wimbledon losing to the eventual champion- Halep in straight sets.
She is coming to the US Open off a pre-quarterfinal finish in the Cincinnati Open and must be looking to end the jinx of losing in the semifinals as she has done it four times this year. Consistency is one factor that Svitolina must emphasise in this tournament. She has won against the big names such as Zhang, Keys, Ostapenko, Muguruza, Navarro, Kenin, Barty, Vondrousova, Venus, Sakkari, Martic, Kasatkina, Bencic and Mertens.
Venus is coming to the match after a ruthless 6-1 6-0 performance against World Number 38- Saisai Zheng. Svitolina also had a smooth sailing beating American teenager -Whitney Osuigwe 6-1 7-5.
Venus should be banking on her powerful forehand and attacking game to win this match. Svitolina will be looking to capitalise by extracting maximum mistakes out of Venus.
Contrasting approaches may be witnessed in this encounter as Venus loves to finish off her points short through her fast ball-striking while Svitolina prefers to keep the rallies long and tire down the opponent.
Svitolina's biggest plus point is her flexibility as she can change gears from offence to defence or vice-versa as per the match's situation. Svitolina also leads the head to head record 2-1 against Venus. She lost her first meeting with Venus in 2017- Rome but bounced back to win two matches in a row in 2017- Rogers Cup and the 2019- French Open.
Svitolina will also aim to ensure that her tremendous court coverage does not let her down in this crucial event. While Venus will want to prove to the whole world that she is not done yet at the age of 39, Svitolina will want to prove that she is the next big thing in tennis at the young age of 24.
The 15-year age gap between Venus and Svitolina will be fascinating to watch for the fans.
Both Venus and Svitolina will surely perform their best battling it out for every point with their never-give-up attitude.
Elina Svitolina to win in three sets