Australian Open – Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova, two of the biggest names in women’s tennis today, are set to rekindle their ‘rivalry’ in the quarterfinal round of the Australian Open on Monday at 10:45 p.m (Eastern Time) at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne.
Williams, the defending women’s singles champion, has been superb through the first four rounds despite taking a lengthy hiatus after the US Open championship last year.
After a tough first-round encounter with Camila Giorgi 6-4, 7-5, the world’s no.1 netter and arguably the greatest female netter in history dispatched her next three opponents without dropping a single set.
Sharapova, the runner-up of last year’s final, has been in a dog-fight in her last two matches, surviving Laura Davis of the United States 6-1, 6-7, 6-0 before eking out a tough two-set victory over Belinda Bencic 7-5, 7-5.
Despite her shaky firm, Sharapova is one of few players in women’s tennis capable of upending Williams. On the other hand, Williams never seems to bother who will be her next opponent.
“I had no idea who I was playing next,” Williams told reporters via BBC.com. “She had a really good match earlier but I’ve got nothing to lose and will just do my best. I just feel like I’m really confident in my game right now, not against her or against any other opponent.”
Indeed, Williams has all the luxury to be confident against Sharapova, having beaten the Russian star 18 times out of 20 confrontations. Not only that, Williams dominated their last six meetings as she defeated Sharapova without dropping a set.
Still, despite facing a tall order in Williams, Sharapova appears to be optimistic of her chances ahead of their Aussie Open quarterfinal showdown.
“It was a great final last year, I came close in the second set but not close enough. I’ll look forward to playing the best in the world and it’ll be a great match.”
Live Stream Information:
Australian Open quarterfinal coverage will begin at 7:00 a.m on WatchESPN (US viewers) and Skygo (UK viewers). Live scores & updates are streamed on ESPN courtcast. Order of play for the quarterfinal round in both men’s and women’s singles can be found on Australian Open schedule.