🇦🇺 Australian Open, Quarter-Final Preview
🇷🇺 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova vs. 🇺🇸 Danielle Collins
An unexpected quarter-final match-up at the Australian Open sees Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Danielle Collins go head-to-head for the first time. This is a huge opportunity for Pavlyuchenkova and Collins to reach a maiden Grand Slam semi-final,, something that neither would have realistically expected when they arrived at Melbourne Park at the start of the week. Who will step up and make the most of this rare chance?
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova arrived in Melbourne in poor form having suffered early round exits in Shenzhen and Hobart. However, as has often been the case with Pavlyuchenkova over the years, she has really stepped up her level on the big stage. Pavlyuchenkova has a had a particularly tough route to the final 8. The Russian stared the event with a straight set win over Monica Puig before coming from a set down to upset the 9th seeded Kiki Bertens. Pavlyuchenkova stormed past Aliaksandra Sasnovich in straight sets in the third round before booking her spot in a second Australian Open quarter-final with a hard-fought 6-7 6-3 6-3 victory over the 5th seeded Sloane Stephens.
Danielle Collins arrived in Melbourne having never won a main draw singles match at a Grand Slam, a week later she is through to the quarter-finals, unbelievable. Collins broke her Grand Slam duck with an upset victory from a set down over the 14th seeded Julia Goerges, since then Collins has been relatively untroubled. The level of Collins has progressively improved throughout the event. Collins defeated Sachia Vickery and Caroline Garcia in straight sets before producing arguably the best performance of her career to thrash Angelique Kerber 6-0 6-2 in less than an hour. Collins was at her aggressive best against Kerber, blasting the former champion off the court.
This will be the first career meeting between Pavlyuchenkova and Collins, a huge occasion for both. Can Collins keep her fairy tale run alive or will Pavlyuchenkova be too strong?