US Open, 🇺🇸🍎🗽🚕 R4 Preview + Prediction:
(9) 🇺🇸 Venus Williams vs 🇪🇸 Carla Suarez Navarro
Venus Williams and Carla Suarez Navarro will renew hostilities when they meet at the fourth round stage at Flushing Meadows on Saturday. Venus and Carla have built up a solid, competitive rivalry over the years, this will be their 8th career meeting with Venus currently leading the head-to-head 4-3. This is an enjoyable match-up because of the extreme contrast in styles, the raw power of Williams up against the finesse and consistency of Suarez Navarro. On a hard court, the head-to-head record is split at 2 wins apiece, who will edge ahead with a win in New York and move on to the second week?
Venus Williams got off to a scratchy start in New York, Venus was pushed to a third set by Viktoria Kuzmova before improving her level to win straight set matches over Oceane Dodin and Maria Sakkari. Conversely, Suarez Navarro cruised through her first round match over Ipek Soylu before winning a couple of tough three set matches against Mirjana Lucic-Baroni and Ekaterina Makarova. The U.S Open has been a surprisingly successful tournament for Suarez Navarro over the years, a win over Venus Williams on Sunday would be up there in terms of career victories for Carla if she can pull off the upset.
Ultimately, I have to give the edge to Venus Williams here. On a hard court, given the form Venus has displayed all year she must be considered a reasonable favourite. Venus has all the weapons to hurt Suarez Navarro on this surface. However, we have seen before that Suarez Navarro does have the defensive skills to frustrate Venus. I think this will be a close match with a few swings in momentum but ultimately it will be the mentally tough, experienced Venus that pulls through when it matters most.
Prediction: Venus Williams to defeat Carla Suarez Navarro in 3 sets