Cincinnati Thursday: Another Epic?
Published August 14, 2014 12:10
CINCINNATI, OH, USA - Former runner-up Angelique Kerber looks to continue her fine summer form when she meets Caroline Wozniacki in the third round of the Western & Southern Open. Also in action is 2009 champion Jelena Jankovic, who takes on Sloane Stephens for the second tournament in succession.
Thursday, Third Round
 Angelique Kerber (GER #7) vs.  Caroline Wozniacki (DEN #12)
Head-to-head: Kerber leads 5-3
Encounters between Angelique Kerber and Caroline Wozniacki over the past few years have tended to be of the epic variety. The most recent of these came this June in the Eastbourne semifinals, when Kerber prevailed in a contender for match of the season.
Both players have used their run on the grass as a springboard for the second half of the season, with Kerber impressing at Wimbledon and Stanford, while a title in Istanbul and a quarterfinal in Montréal have edged Wozniacki back towards the Top 10. The Dane came within a whisker of defeating World No.1 Serena Williams in Canada and has cruised through her opening two matches at the Lindner Family Tennis Center.
 Jelena Jankovic (SRB #9) vs. Sloane Stephens (USA #21)
Head-to-head: Jankovic leads 2-0
It is fair to say that 2014 has not exactly gone to plan for Sloane Stephens. Things started out brightly enough for the WTA Rising Star, with a new coach and a solid showing at the Australian Open. Since then, though, she has struggled to get the most out of her undoubted talent, suffering a number of early exits.
To help end this mid-season malaise, Stephens brought in Maria Sharapova's former coach Thomas Hogstedt and the early signs are promising. In Montréal, she started to resemble her old self, breezing past Aleksandra Wozniak before being edged out in three high-quality sets by No.7 seed Jelena Jankovic. This upturn in fortunes has continued in Cincinnati, where straight set wins over Andrea Petkovic and Barbora Zahlavova Strycova have booked a meeting with former champion and last week's conqueror Jankovic.
Stat to watch: Wozniacki made her WTA debut as a 15-year-old wildcard at the at the Western & Southern Open back in 2005.
Also on court...
Serena Williams continues her bid for a maiden Cincinnati title when she takes on Flavia Pennetta in the second match on Center Court. Over on Grandstand, Maria Sharapova and Agnieszka Radwanska are in action against Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Sabine Lisicki, respectively.