Former World no.1 Mats Wilander has predicted Ash Barty’s potent serve and forehand will help her win the US Open. Barty has been in excellent form in the recent past and it is not going to be easy for the other players to put brakes on her. The Australian made a winning start to her US Open campaign as she defeated former US Open finalist Vera Zvonareva in straight sets 6-1, 7-6(7) in the opening round.
The World no.1 has now won six matches on the trot and she will look to continue her domination. Barty recently won the Cincinnati Open and she enters the US Open high on confidence after winning Wimbledon.
“Ash Barty will never, ever beat herself by risking too much when she is winning,” said Wilander. “I like it when she plays like that – giving her opponent the chance to prove to her that she can beat her because when you do, she will step up her game again. In the end, I think it was a good win for Ash Barty.”
The seven-time Grand slam champion, Wilander feels Barty’s slice backhand won’t be that effective on the hard courts in New York and she will need to add variety in her game. Wilander added that Barty is starting to feel she is the favorite in the US Open.
“Hard courts I think are the most difficult surface for her because obviously, the sliced backhand is good on any surface but it’s better on clay and it’s better on the grass,” added Wilander.
“On hard courts, these players are hitting the ball so cleanly and so big that a low sliced backhand doesn’t bother players that much these days. So she has to add variety.
“In the end, it’s the serve and the forehand that’s going to win her this title. I do feel that with every match, winning Cinci, that she is starting to feel the favorite. She can handle the pressure.”
The Australian will face Dane Clara Tauson in the second round.