Wimbledon 2019: From World No 1 Ashleigh Barty to seven-time winner Serena Williams, a look at top contenders in women's singles

Take a look at the list of some of the top contenders for the women's singles title at Wimbledon 2019 - including the likes of Ashleigh Barty, Naomi Osaka and Serena Williams.

FP Sports June 30, 2019 21:55:05 IST
Wimbledon 2019: From World No 1 Ashleigh Barty to seven-time winner Serena Williams, a look at top contenders in women's singles
  • Ashleigh Barty goes into Wimbledon buoyed, unlike her predecessor Naomi Osaka, by being world number one and with several of her major rivals struggling.

  • With 37-year-old seven-time champion Serena Williams finally showing signs of age, Osaka looking exposed through poor form and two-time Wimbledon singles champion Petra Kvitova still easing back to top form after an arm injury, defending champion Angelique Kerber may be the biggest threat to Barty.

  • Osaka, for her part, says she is much more in the frame of mind she was when she won the Australian Open earlier this year than the stressed-out player who exited the French Open in the third round.

Ashleigh Barty goes into Wimbledon buoyed, unlike her predecessor Naomi Osaka, by being world number one and with several of her major rivals struggling.

The engaging 23-year-old Australian -- who emulated compatriot Evonne Goolagong Cawley by becoming number one last weekend -- has yet to get beyond the third round at Wimbledon.

With 37-year-old seven-time champion Serena Williams finally showing signs of age, Osaka looking exposed through poor form and two-time Wimbledon singles champion Petra Kvitova still easing back to top form after an arm injury, defending champion Angelique Kerber may be the biggest threat to Barty.

Williams is still chasing the elusive 24th Grand Slam title that would put her alongside Australian Margaret Court, but she was not talking up her chances.

"I just haven't had enough match play, quite frankly," she said.

Osaka, for her part, says she is much more in the frame of mind she was when she won the Australian Open earlier this year than the stressed-out player who exited the French Open in the third round.

The 21-year-old says the number one spot she held earlier this year had been a millstone round her neck: "Mentally it was way more stress and pressure than I could have imagined."

Here's a look at the top 10 contenders for the women's singles crown at Wimbledon:

Ashleigh Barty

Seeded: 1

Ranked: 1

Country: Australia

Age: 23

2019 Match Record: 36-5

2019 Singles Titles: 3

Career Singles Titles: 6

Grand Slam Singles Titles: 1 — French Open (2019)

Last 5 Wimbledons: 2018-Lost in 3rd Round, 2017-1st, 2016-Did Not Play, 2015-DNP, 2014-DNP

Wimbledon 2019 From World No 1 Ashleigh Barty to seventime winner Serena Williams a look at top contenders in womens singles

Barty is the first Australian to top the women’s rankings since Evonne Goolagong Cawley 43 years ago, but her chances at Wimbledon depend on how she recovers from the arm injury that forced her out of the Eastbourne warm-up. AP

Aces: Owns a 12-match winning streak, including run to first Grand Slam title at French Open on red clay, followed by title on grass at Birmingham. ... 27th woman to be ranked No 1. ... Played professional cricket while away from the tennis tour for about 1½ years after the 2014 U.S. Open.

Takeaway: If she can accomplish on clay what she did in Paris, imagine how she could fare right now on grass courts, which she prefers more and was the surface on which she made her return to competition in 2016. Certainly, she should improve on her 2-3 career Wimbledon record.

Naomi Osaka

Seeded: 2

Ranked: 2

Country: Japan

Age: 21

2019 Match Record: 22-7

2019 Singles Titles: 1

Career Singles Titles: 3

Grand Slam Singles Titles: 2 — Australian Open (2019), U.S. Open (2018)

Last 5 Wimbledons: 2018-Lost in 3rd Round, 2017-3rd, 2016-DNP, 2015-DNP, 2014-DNP

Wimbledon 2019 From World No 1 Ashleigh Barty to seventime winner Serena Williams a look at top contenders in womens singles

Despite her struggles, Osaka is still among the favourites at the All England Club this year due to her ability to bring out her best tennis on the game’s grandest stages. AP

Aces: Two of her three career tour-level titles came at major tournaments. Ranks third this season in total aces; averages 6.8 per match.

Takeaway: Coming off a third-round exit at the French Open that snapped her 16-match Grand Slam winning streak; should be able to get a new run started at the All England Club.

Karolina Pliskova

Seeded: 3

Ranked: 3

Country: Czech Republic

Age: 27

2019 Match Record: 35-9

2019 Singles Titles: 2

Career Singles Titles: 13

Grand Slam Singles Titles: 0 — Best: Runner-Up, U.S. Open (2016)

Last 5 Wimbledons: 2018-4th, 2017-2nd, 2016-2nd, 2015-2nd, 2014-2nd

Wimbledon 2019 From World No 1 Ashleigh Barty to seventime winner Serena Williams a look at top contenders in womens singles

Pliskova’s immense potential has not yet translated into success on the biggest stage but her big serve and blistering forehand keep her among the top contenders on grass. AP

Aces: Faced twin sister, Kristyna, in singles this month, their first pro meeting. Reached at least the quarter-finals at 7 of past 11 major appearances. Leads WTA by winning 63.2% of service points in 2019.

Takeaway: 8-7 career mark and only one trip to second week, a year ago, makes Wimbledon her worst major. Still, if she can get the hang of the footwork, that big serve could carry her far.

Angelique Kerber

Seeded: 5

Ranked: 5

Country: Germany

Age: 31

2019 Match Record: 24-11

2019 Singles Titles: 0

Career Singles Titles: 12

Grand Slam Singles Titles: 3 — Wimbledon (2018), Australian Open (2016), U.S. Open (2016)

Last 5 Wimbledons: 2018-Won Championship, 2017-4th, 2016-RU, 2015-3rd, 2014-QF

Wimbledon 2019 From World No 1 Ashleigh Barty to seventime winner Serena Williams a look at top contenders in womens singles

Holder Kerber will hope that a return to the scene of her latest Grand Slam triumph can revive her form and world ranking which has dipped due to illness and injuries in the last year. AP

Aces: Shaky start to 2019 included a first-round exit at French Open last month. ... Big straight-set win over Simona Halep in a matchup of former No. 1s put Kerber into the semifinals at a fourth consecutive grass-court event.

Takeaway: Her lefty offense-to-defense style caused havoc for opponents at the All England Club, where she reached the final two of the past three years. A strong run at a second championship in a row is not out of the question, no matter her 2019 form.

Simona Halep

Seeded: 7

Ranked: 7

Country: Romania

Age: 27

2019 Match Record: 29-10

2019 Singles Titles: 0

Career Singles Titles: 18

Grand Slam Singles Titles: 1 — French Open (2018)

Last 5 Wimbledons: 2018-3rd, 2017-QF, 2016-QF, 2015-1st, 2014-SF

Wimbledon 2019 From World No 1 Ashleigh Barty to seventime winner Serena Williams a look at top contenders in womens singles

Halep started the season on top of the world rankings but a trophy-less 2019 has seen her plummet to seventh — her lowest ranking since April 2016. AP

Aces: Winning 46.8% of return points this season, tied for fifth on tour. ... Wimbledon is the only major where she hasn't been past the quarter-finals since 2014.

Takeaway: Her first attempt to defend a Grand Slam title ended with a quarter-final loss at Roland Garros. Maybe she'll fare better with less spotlight, pressure and outside expectations at the All England Club.

Dark Horse - Serena Williams

Seeded: 11

Ranked: 11

Country: United States

Age: 37

2019 Match Record: 9-3

2019 Singles Titles: 0

Career Singles Titles: 72

Grand Slam Singles Titles: 23 — Wimbledon (7: 2002, 2003, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2015, 2016), Australian Open (7: 2003, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2015, 2017), French Open (3: 2002, 2013, 2015), U.S. Open (6: 1999, 2002, 2008, 2012, 2013, 2014)

Last 5 Wimbledons: 2018-RU, 2017-DNP, 2016-W, 2015-W, 2014-3rd

Wimbledon 2019 From World No 1 Ashleigh Barty to seventime winner Serena Williams a look at top contenders in womens singles

Williams’ hunt for a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam following maternity leave has twice ended in heartbreak but the American is still a force to be reckoned with at Wimbledon, where she will look to improve on last year’s runner-up finish. AP

Aces: Has five titles and two runner-up finishes in her past 10 appearances at the All England Club. Her serve on grass might be the most dangerous combination of shot and surface in tennis history.

Takeaway: Blamed lack of fitness and lack of matches for the third-round exit at Roland Garros but did not enter any grass-court tuneup tournament, unlike her sister, Venus.

With inputs from Agencies.

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