2010 Wimbledon – Nick’s Picks – Women’s Singles Fourth Round
Justine Henin (BEL) vs. Kim Clijsters (BEL)
Henin looked fantastic in the opening set against Petrova, and then rallied in the second set from 1-3 down to win 6-1, 6-4. She is now 27-0 in Grand Slam third-round matches and she is also 101-12 against Russians in her career! Simply put, the odds were not in Petrova’s favor in that match.
Clijsters moved past Maria Kirilenko 6-3, 6-3 to reach the fourth round of Wimbledon for the sixth time in her career. The last time she played a third-round match at a Grand Slam she suffered the worst loss in her career – 6-0, 6-1 to Nadia Petrova at the 2010 Australian Open. I don’t think you will ever see that kind of performance from Clijsters again!
This is one of the oldest rivalries on the WTA Tour. The two have faced 24 times previously and the series is tied at 12-12. Henin leads 3-1 on grass and her only loss came by retirement. In their two matches earlier this year, Clijsters won both in three tough sets. We’ve all been looking forward to this match since the draw came out and both players come in playing fantastic tennis. There will be no surprises from either side as they know each other extremely well. I believe if Henin plays the way she did in the first set against Petrova she will win this match. Although, if Clijsters is able to keep her pinned back with her fantastic serve and unbelievable movement it could go her way. This match really could go either way, but if I was forced to choose I would give a slight edge to Henin because of Clijsters’ recent injury. I believe Henin wants this title more than anything in the world and for that reason I give her a slight advantage.
Nick’s Pick – Henin in 3 sets
Jelena Jankovic (SRB) vs. Vera Zvonareva (RUS)
Jankovic needed only 57 minutes to dispense of Alona Bondarenko in the third round, and the first set only took 14 minutes! She broke Bondarenko five times out of six chances and never even gave the Ukrainian an opportunity in this match. A win here would put Jankovic in the quarters of Wimbledon for the first time in her career.
Zvonareva has been up and down this year, but right now she seems to have found her groove. She made quick work of 15th-seeded Yanina Wickmayer in the third round and is into the 4th round for the third time in her career. Like Jankovic, she has never been to the quarterfinals of Wimbledon so this would be a big win for her.
Jankovic is 6-5 in her career against Zvonareva, but in their one match this year, Zvonareva won in straight sets. This will be their first meeting on grass. This match is going to be a barn-burner! Both girls have fantastic movement, excellent groundstrokes and solid serves. Both have spent much time at the IMG Bollettieri Tennis Academy and they know each other’s games very well. Jankovic has been the more consistent of the two throughout 2010 and I think her two-handed backhand is a bigger weapon than Zvonareva’s backhand. The other thing to watch out for here is that Zvonareva can tend to lose her mental focus at times and that really gives her opponents an advantage. I don’t see this match ending in straight sets and I have to give a slight edge to Jankovic because of her consistency this year, but don’t be surprised if Zvonareva pulls out the win.
Nick’s Pick – Jankovic in 3 sets