By Ros Satar, at Wimbledon

  • We crunch the numbers between Simona Halep and Serena Williams as they bid to win the Wimbledon title
WIMBLEDON, UK – Simona Halep declares her love for the grass, and Serena Williams let’s go the pressure of ‘24’ but what do the stats tell us?

Serena Williams is no stranger to Centre court on the final Saturday, but for Simona Halep it will be her fifth Slam final and her first on grass.

 

Head to Head

Simona Halep [7] Serena Williams [11]
1 9

 

In their 11th meeting, Williams certainly holds all the cards in terms of their head-to-head, but Halep’s one and only victory over her in the round-robin stages of the WTA Finals stands out as a superb piece of aggressive play by Halep. That Williams remembers that match with chilling clarity means we are in for a lot of power hitting.

Advantage: Williams

 

Titles History

Halep Williams
Titles (2019) 18 (0) 72(0)
Slams 1 23

 

Once Halep broke her duck of titles from finals back in 2013, she has been a consistent challenger for tin every year winning at least one title. Ironically that same year, Williams won 11 titles – almost double Halep’s tally and did not miss a year until 2018.

Advantage: Williams

 

Year to Date/Career W/L Record

Halep Williams
All surfaces W/L 35-10 / 362-161 15-3 / 807-135
Grass-Court 8-1 / 35-15 6-0 / 107-13

 

Williams is playing pain free and is unbeaten on the green stuff, but Halep picked up some decent time on the grass in Eastbourne. What might make the difference for Williams is the additional match-play in the Mixed Doubles – she was more relaxed and it really seems to have helped her along.

Advantage: Deuce

 

Match Stats 2019 (Source: WTAMatch Notes)

Halep Williams
Tie-Breaks 6-4 0-0
Deciding sets 11-5 5-1

 

Tie-breaks

Williams has been by far the most efficient of the pair, but then has played far less while struggling with injury.

Deciding Sets

Even allowing for a reduced calendar while getting over injury, Williams has been far better at closing out in the event of a decider, while Halep has done well over the distance.

Advantage: Williams

 

Tournament

Serve/Return

Williams has been stronger in the serve department, not surprising;y, and her serving has improved over the course of the tournament, but Halep has been stronger in terms of return points won, and that could make all the difference when it comes to getting her racquet on arguably one of the best serves in the game.

Williams has looked the most clinical when it gets to winners, but also leads on the unforced errors side.

Advantage: Williams

 

What they had to say

Wimbledon is Williams’ domain – well it was until last year. We have seen this with her – every milestone Slam victory has been a bit of a hump, such is the importance of the narrative and indeed legacy that Williams owns.

She said: “It’s really not about 24 or 23 or 25. It’s really just about going out there and giving my best effort no matter what. No matter what I do, I will always have a great career. I don’t know. Like, I just kind of let it go this morning. Yeah, I feel really calm about it.”

Halep faces an uphill task, but she has an inner belief that has developed since reaching the World No. 1, since winning her first Slam, and now reaching the Wimbledon final, on probably what was her least favourite surface until this week.

She said, after her quarter-final: “I have learned that I have the chance. Now, if I face her, I will believe that I have my chance to win against her. Of course, I respect a lot what she has done and what she’s doing.

“But now I feel stronger mentally facing her. We will see what is going to happen. It’s just a big challenge for me.”

Prediction: Williams in three sets.

The Wimbledon 2019 Ladies’ Singles Final takes place on 14 July at 2pm BST.

How to Watch/Follow Wimbledon 2019

TV Across BBC Channels & Red Button
Live Stream BBC Sport

 

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