Belinda Bencic will take on Naomi Osaka while 2nd seed Iga Swiatek is set to face Jessica Pegula in the semis of Miami Open 2022

Naomi Osaka is back in the mix and some style! The 4-time Grand Slam Champion has entered the tournament as an unseeded player due to her drop in rankings after the 3-month long break from tennis.

Naomi Osaka
Naomi Osaka

Osaka has certainly shown her class in this tournament having won five matches so far without dropping a single set! The Japanese star defeated Astra Sharma in the first round and followed it up with a comprehensive 6-2, 6-3 win against 13th seed Angelique Kerber in the next round. Osaka defeated 9th seed Danielle Collins with a dominating scoreline of 6-2, 6-1 to set up a semi-final clash against Belinda Bencic.

Naomi Osaka at Miami Open 2022
Source: Getty Images

Bencic meanwhile, would consider herself a bit lucky to not face a single-seeded player in her journey till the semis. Irrespective of that, the 22nd seed from Switzerland is in supreme touch and just like her semi-final opponent, she is yet to lose a set. The Swiss star defeated Daria Saville 6-1, 6-2 in the quarter-finals to qualify for the semis.

Belinda Bencic and Naomi Osaka have faced each other five times before, with Bencic leading 4-1 on the head-to-head – winning on each of the last four occasions. Bencic is the favorite going into the clash as the seeded player and considering the previous head-to-head records. However, given the quality tennis, Osaka is currently playing, we predict a straight-set win for the Japanese star.

Iga Swiatek is set to face a tough challenge from Jessica Pegula

Swiatek has been in splendid touch throughout this ATP-1000 event and looks like the player to beat. The Polish ace is seeded second in the tournament and she has certainly lived up to expectations so far. Swiatek comfortably brushed aside seeded opponents in her last two encounters. She defeated 14th seed Coco Gauff 6-3, 6-1 and followed it up with a win against Petra Kvitova (28) to set up a semi-final clash against Pegula.

skysports iga swiatek tennis 5719576
Image Credits – Sky Sports

Jessica Pegula is seeded 16th in the women’s singles draw and has certainly exceeded expectations. The American defeated compatriot Sloane Stephens in the first round. And then went on to win against 17th seed Elena Rybakina 6-3, 6-4. Pegula received a walkover in her quarter-final clash as 5th seed Paula Badosa retired midway. The American was leading 4-1 in the first set.

Pegula and Swiatek have faced each other only once before in the WTA circuit. The American came out on top in that match played in 2019 in Washington DC and leads the 1-0 head to head. On this occasion, given the form Swiatek is in, we predict a comfortable straight-sets win for the second seed from Poland.

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