US Open: Simona Halep ready for Maria Sharapova test

Javier Howell
August 28, 2017

A total of eight women have a chance to hold the No. 1 ranking when the U.S. Open ends. "You know, maybe I'll make the next one", she said with a grin.

The other semifinal could be No. 2 Andy Murray vs.

However, it is Nadal who has claimed his place as the world No. 1 once more, fresh from his comeback to top form this year. He has won all three meetings they have played this year and dating back to his victory over the Spaniard in the 2015 Basel final, Federer has won four in a row over Nadal.

His hopes of winning a sixth US Open, and first since 2008, suffered a blow with the third of those defeats against Zverev in Montreal two weeks ago.

Having just returned to number one, Nadal wants to stay that way and he admits he would rather face Federer in the final.

Giorgi can beat most players on her day, but the issue with the Italian is how often she actually has 'her day.' The Italian has beaten some very good players in recent months, including Elina Svitolina at the Aegon Classic in Birmingham and I think she will knock down the No.31 seed on Monday.

"So the first week was really just trying to feel better, get better, get back on the court at some stage". Sharapova hasn't played since late July when she withdrew from a tournament at Stanford with a left forearm injury, and has been spotted practicing at the Open grounds wearing a right sleeve.

"I have been playing sets the last few days, and I'm really happy how I'm feeling".

"I'd love to play Rafa here in New York", Federer said.

I think [to] walk less and be in the street less, because it's so - I don't know. "I'm just thinking about myself". There has been a lot written about whether Sharapova should have been given a wildcard into the main draw and I imagine that she was the one name that nearly everybody was hoping to avoid, Simona Halep especially.

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With Murray, Djokovic, Wawrinka - with 18 Slams between them - Nishikori and Raonic all missing, the tournament should also present the ideal opportunity for the widely-touted "NextGen" to step up.

46-3, 10-0 " Career first-round records for Sharapova in all Grand Slam tournaments and at the U.S. Open.

Even if she lost my bet in the French Open, I think she had more matches and more consistent this year playing, definitely, yes. Of course I was a little bit, like, 'How is possible again?' First round of a grand slam.

Sharapova's back with her Flushing fans, back for her first Grand Slam since the ban.

Sharapova has been participating in tournaments via wild-card invitations, beginning on red clay at Stuttgart, Germany, in April.

"About the wildcard, the tournament decided, so they can do anything they want", said Halep.

"Is not my position to talk about this" (Kerber and Halep both qtd.at the USOpen.org website, August 26). "It's a good story for the tournament that she's back".

"So I think she's OK".

"I'm not looking for any confirmation or any relief because I've accepted the fact that from my first match, I'm going to have a tough battle".

That however, is mostly because at that time, Grand Slam matches would be contested on a best of three set basis until the fourth round. So maybe I will change this.