• Simona Halep achieved her dream in 2018, but can she do it again?
  • Top Seeds: Simona Halep, Karolina Pliskova, Elina Svitolina, Sofia Kenin
  • British Interest: Johanna Konta [9], Heather Watson
PARIS, FRANCE – In the absence of defending champion Ashleigh Barty, Simona Halep aims for a third Slam title – and has been impressive on the dirt so far.

 

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[1] Simona Halep

Best Result: Title (2018)

It has been quite the year for Halep, after a slow start in Adelaide, she has been in the Australian Open semi-final and has won three tournaments back to back (Dubai, Prague and Rome). She arrives as the favourite, but it could be a challenging draw.

Halep’s Path to the Final (Ranking/Seeding)

  • R1: Sara Sorribes Tormo | First Meeting
  • R2: Jil Teichmann | First Meeting
  • R3: Amanda Anisimova [25] | H2H: Anisimova leads 1-0
  • R4: Marketa Vondrousova [15] | H2H: Vondrousova leads 2-0
  • QF: Kiki Bertens [5] | H2H tied at 3-3
  • SF: Elina Svitolina [3] | H2H: Svitolina leads 5-4
  • F: Karolina Pliskova [2] | H2H: Halep leads 8-4

First up will be to extract some revenge from Amanda Anisimova for her defeat last year, but she has some tricky clay-courters coming up and Slam no. 3 will be a battle.

 

[2] Karolina Pliskova

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Best Result: Semi-final (2017)

Momentum could be everything for Pliskova, who comes in as Rome champion, yet she finds herself with a challenging draw on paper.

Pliskova’s Path to the Final (Ranking/Seeding)

  • R1: Qualifier
  • R2: Jelena Ostapenko | H2H: Pliskova leads 3-2
  • R3: Sloane Stephens [29] | H2H: Stephens leads 3-1
  • R4: Petra Martic [13] | H2H: Martic leads 4-2
  • QF: Petra Kvitova [7] | H2H: Kvitova leads 3-1
  • SF: Sofia Kenin [4] | H2H: Pliskova leads 4-0
  • F: Simona Halep [1] | H2H: Halep leads 8-4

Much like Halep, Pliskova meets a few tricky opponents who know their way around a clay court, and might well go deep into the second week but until Rome was pretty inconsistent over the year.

 

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[3] Elina Svitolina

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Best Result: Quarter-final (2015, 2017)

For a long time now, Svitolina has been chasing her elusive first title, and has been getting in some late practice in Strasbourg.

Svitolina’s Path to the Final (Ranking/Seeding)

  • R1: Varvara Gracheva | First Meeting
  • R2: Qualifier
  • R3: Ekaterina Alexandrova [27] | H2H: First Meeting
  • R4: Elise Mertens [16] | H2H: Svitolina leads 3-1
  • QF: Serena Williams [6] | H2H: Williams leads 5-1
  • SF: Simona Halep [1] | H2H: Svitolina leads 5-4
  • F: Karolina Pliskova [2] | H2H: Pliskova leads 5-4

This is potentially a tough draw with a few slim leads in head to heads but some formidable opposition if things go to plan. Svitolina will need to play herself into form, and also might prefer to fly a little under the radar with eyes on the favourite Halep, and also Serena Williams to see if this is where she can win No. 24.

 

[4] Sofia Kenin

Embed from Getty Images

Best Result: R4 (2019)

The reigning Australian Open champion will be trying to regain the form that took her to a maiden Slam earlier this year, but she was not able to go all the way at the US Open, and with a first round loss to a resurgent Victoria Azarenka in Rome, could arrive in Paris a little undercooked on clay.

Kenin’s Path to the Final (Ranking/Seeding)

  • R1: Liudmila Samsonova | First Meeting
  • R2: Ana Bogdan | H2H: Bogdan leads 1-0
  • R3: Donna Vekic [23] | First Meeting
  • R4: Elena Rybakina [14] | H2H: Rybakina leads 1-0
  • QF: Aryna Sabalenka [8] | H2H: Sabalenka leads 2-0
  • SF: Karolina Pliskova [2] | H2H: Pliskova leads 4-0
  • F: Simona Halep [1] | H2H: Halep leads 1-0

This is a tough draw for the American, and she could be lucky to even match her run to the fourth-round last year as the final Slam rolls round.

 

Roland Garros takes place between 27 September – 11 October.

 

 

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