Number 1 seed plays number 2 seed
By Roger Childs
In any sports tournament when players or teams are seeded, this is the theory.
However, it usually doesn’t happens.
In tennis grand slams in recent years, especially in women’s singles, it has been very rare.
So it is no doubt gratifying for the those who did this year’s seedings for the Australian Open, that the top seed, Simona Halep, meets number two seed Caroline Wozniacki.
Neither has won a grand slam in their careers, so history will be made.
Halep has held a high world ranking for a number of years, but hasn’t been able to win one of the four big tournaments. She has been the beaten finalist at Roland Garros twice: in 2014 and 2017.
At Melbourne this year she got a real scare in round three in the extreme heat. Unseeded Lauren Davis pushed her hard and but for a broken toenail would probably have won. Nevertheless Halep survived and took the deciding set 15-13.
The Romanian has a solid all round game and is very fit. If she has any weaknesses they would be a serve that although consistent is not very fast and a need to take more risks in going for winners.
Caroline Wozniacki has twice been in the final at the US Open. She was also a finalist here in the recent Auckland tournament and has a faster serve than Halep. She is also not reluctant to go for the wide angled winners, but is less consistent with her serving and ground strokes.
It is an intriguing match-up with no obvious favourite.
One thing is certain: there will be a new first time grand slam champion in the morning.