Simona Halep vs Mariana Duque-Marino tips, predictions and live stream: Halep looks set to cruise into Citi Open quarterfinals on Thursday

Hannah Wilks in WTA 3 Aug 2017
  • World no. 2 Simona Halep faces Mariana Duque-Marino in the second round of the Citi Open
  • Halep vs Duque-Marino Citi Open tennis is live from Washington, D.C. on Thursday at 1.50pm local/6.50pm BST
  • Watch and bet on tennis live from Washington, D.C. at bet365 > live streaming > tennis
Simona Halep (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

Simona Halep continues her Citi Open campaign as she takes on Colombian veteran Mariana Duque Marino for a place in the Washington, D.C. quarterfinals on Thursday.

Halep vs Duque-Marino Citi Open tennis is live from Washington, D.C. on Thursday at 1.50pm local/6.50pm BST . Watch and bet on tennis live from Washington, D.C. at bet365 > live streaming > tennis



After a hard-fought first-round win over former champion Sloane Stephens, world no. 2 Simona Halep prepares to face Mariana Duque Marino in the second round at the Citi Open.

Simona Halep may have failed to secure her first Grand Slam title despite not just reaching the French Open final for the second time, but leading her inexperienced, unseeded opponent by a set and a break; but the world no. 2 has plenty of incentive to bounce back quickly and focus on the future. The 2016 Rogers Cup champion is just 981 points behind new world no. 1 Karolina Pliskova in the rankings, and the Czech has major points to defend at the Western & Southern Open and at the US Open, where she was winner and runner-up respectively last year. Halep also has points to defend – she was a semifinalist in Cincinnati and a quarterfinalist at the US Open in 2016 – but the Romanian still looks to be in with a brilliant chance of becoming world no. 1 for the first time as the WTA continues to jostle for position in the absence of Serena Williams.

Her two Grand Slam finals so far might have come on clay, as have six of her career titles, but American hard courts are an extremely strong surface for Halep, who has won New Haven, Indian Wells and the Rogers Cup before as well as finishing runner-up in Cincinnati and making the semifinals of the US Open in 2015. The Romanian, who lost in the quarterfinals of Wimbledon to Johanna Konta in an extremely tight match, was obviously keen to start her US hard-court campaign as she took a wildcard into the Citi Open, where she is making her debut ahead of next week’s Rogers Cup and the upcoming Western & Southern Open.

Halep had a tough opener in Washington, D.C. as she faced former champion Sloane Stephens, still a very difficult opponent despite this being just her second tournament back after a 12-month absence from competition due to an ankle injury. Stephens played very well in the first set under the circumstances, showcasing her easy power, and Halep had to bide her time before nudging the American to unravel in the first-set tie break. But once she had the first set under her belt and the bit between her teeth, Halep raced through the second set to record a 7-6(3), 6-0 victory.

‘I can say that was a very tough first set,’ Halep said. ‘I was missing too much and also she did some great points. For the first round and first match on hard court, it was not that bad. Second set was much better, and I feel better now.’

Citi Open 2017 live stream: WTA tennis live from Washington, D.C.

The transition from grass to hard courts doesn’t tend to be as tricky for the players as making the switch from clay to grass, because so many of them are so much more experienced when it comes to playing on hard courts, but there are still adjustments to be made and Halep performed well for her first match of this part of the season. The Romanian will look to put her foot down, though, and really start to find some form as she takes on Mariana Duque-Marino in the second round on Thursday.

Mariana Duque-Marino (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Duque-Marino booked her place in the second round via a 6-4, 6-1 win over big-hitting American Shelby Rogers. The Colombian, now 27 years old, won her solitary WTA Tour title in her native Bogota back in 2010 and reached her career-high ranking of world no. 66 in October 2015 after a season which included a WTA semifinal in Bogota and a run to the third round of the US Open. Duque-Marino made her second WTA final in spring of 2016 at the Nurnberger Versicherungscup where she finished runner-up to Kiki Bertens after beating Carina Witthoeft, Laura Siegemund and Annika Beck, but shut down her season early after losing to Jelena Jankovic in the first round of the US Open and as a consequence started 2017 outside the world’s top 100 at world no. 109.

A semifinalist at the Sunrise ITF $25k in February, Duque-Marino successfully qualified and won a match at both Indian Wells and Madrid and made the third round of Roland Garros, beating Irina-Camelia Begu and Magdalena Rybarikova. The Colombian finished runner-up to Kateryna Kozlova at the Rome ITF $60k after failing to qualify for Wimbledon and then made the quarterfinals of the Budapest ITF $100k to come into Washington, D.C. ranked world no. 115 and with a decent 25-15 record on the year. 

Duque-Marino has lost each of the previous six matches she has played against opponents ranked inside the world’s top 10 and lost the only match she has ever played against Halep, 3-6, 6-7(6) in qualifying for Madrid all the way back in 2011. Halep is a vastly improved player since then and so comfortable on this surface, it’s difficult to see how Duque-Marino can stop the Romanian from booking her place in the quarterfinals in Washington, D.C. on Thursday. 


Halep vs Duque-Marino is scheduled in Washington, D.C. on Thursday at 1.50pm local/6.50pm BST . Watch and bet on the match live at bet365 > live streaming > Simona Halep vs Mariana Duque-Marino


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Simona Halep vs Mariana Duque-Marino tips, predictions and live stream: Halep looks set to cruise into Citi Open quarterfinals on Thursday

World no. 2 Simona Halep should record a solid victory as she faces Colombian veteran Mariana Duque-Marino for a place in the quarterfinals of the Citi Open in Washington, D.C. on Thursday: Read our tips, predictions and stream the match live online.

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