Last German chance: Kerber wants to reach the semi-finals
One day after the bitter quarter-final defeat of injured Alexander Zverev, only Angelique Kerber of 15 German tennis pros is left at the French Open. To reach her first semi-final in Paris, she has to beat the number one.
Now there is only Angelique Kerber from 15 German tennis pros left at the French Open. This Wednesday, the former world number one wants to reach the semi-finals in Paris for the first time, where Andrea Petkovic was the last German in 2014. With the current number one Simona Halep from Romania, Kerber still has a score to settle at the Australian Open.
Angelique Kerber is number twelve in the world rankings, Simona Halep number one. If the 26-year-old loses, she will lose this position after the French Open to Caroline Wozniacki from Denmark or Garbiñe Muguruza from Spain. The 30-year-old Kerber was already first in the ranking and won the Australian and US Open in 2016, was in the Wimbledon and Olympia finals and the WTA Finals. Halep is still without a title. She lost the final in Paris in 2014 and 2017, at the Australian Open this year.
THE DIRECT COMPARISON:
Halep refused to make it to the final before losing to Wozniacki in Melbourne Kerber. After defending two match points, she won 6-3, 4-6, 9-7 and has been leading 5-4 since then, the only duel on clay being won by Kerber 6-2, 6-2 at the 2016 Fed Cup in Cluj.
“These are the matches you train for and work for. Exactly such matches one would like to have as a player. I know what’s coming, what I can expect. I will try to concentrate on myself as I have done in the last few days and try to win the match myself.”
THAT SAYS HALEP:
“It’s always a tough match. I’m mentally ready, I’m physically ready. I am ready to accept and enjoy this challenge. I think I’ve learned in the past to enjoy more and be grateful for the position I’m in.”
The semi-final opponent for Kerber or Halep will be determined between the former Paris winners Maria Sharapova from Russia and Muguruza. In the men’s singles, the Spanish defending champion Rafael Nadal will go into the quarter-finals as the favourite against the small Argentinian Diego Schwartzman. His better known compatriot Juan Martin del Potro plays in the duel of two former US Open winners against the Croatian Marin Cilic.