January 24, 2018 / 4:22 PM / 24 days ago

Tennis: Factbox - Simona Halep v Angelique Kerber

(Reuters) - A look at the records of Romanian Simona Halep and German Angelique Kerber before their semi-final at the Australian Open on Thursday (prefix number denotes seeding).

1-SIMONA HALEP

Age: 26

WTA ranking: 1 (Highest ranking: 1)

Grand slam titles: 0

2017 Australian Open performance: First round

Best Australian Open performance: Semi-finalist, 2018

2018 Australian Open results:

First round: beat Destanee Aiava (Australia) 7-6(5) 6-1

Second round: beat Eugenie Bouchard (Canada) 6-2 6-2

Third round: beat Lauren Davis (U.S.) 4-6 6-4 15-13

Fourth round: beat Naomi Osaka (Japan) 6-3 6-2

Quarter-finals: beat Karolina Pliskova 6-3 6-2

The Romanian world number one, who is unbeaten this season, is back to her fluent best in Melbourne after a difficult third-round victory over American Davis.

With many of the top seeds already out, Shenzhen Open winner Halep is on course for a maiden grand slam title, but could face a tough test against former world number one Angelique Kerber.

21-ANGELIQUE KERBER

Age: 30

WTA ranking: 16 (Highest ranking: 1)

Tennis - Australian Open - Quarterfinals - Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne, Australia, January 24, 2018. Angelique Kerber of Germany celebrates winning against Madison Keys of the U.S. REUTERS/Issei Kato

Grand slam titles: 2 (Australian Open 2016; U.S. Open 2016)

2017 Australian Open performance: Fourth round

Best Australian Open performance: Winner 2016

2018 Australian Open results:

First round: beat Anna-Lena Friedsam (Germany) 6-0 6-4

Second round: beat Donna Vekic (Croatia) 6-4 6-1

Third round: beat Maria Sharapova (Russia) 6-1 6-3

Fourth round: beat Hsieh Su-wei (Taiwan) 4-6 7-5 6-2

Quarter-finals: beat Madison Keys (U.S.) 6-1 6-2

The former world number one did not enjoy the best of seasons last year but has hit the ground running in 2018, with a title at the Sydney International.

The 30-year-old cruised through the field at Melbourne Park, losing just one set to Hsieh in the fourth round and thrashed Keys in the quarter-finals to stay in contention for her third grand slam title.

HEAD-TO-HEAD (Halep 4 - Kerber 4)

2016 - Kerber d Halep 6-4 6-2 (WTA Finals, hard)

2016 - Kerber d Halep 6-3 6-4 (Cincinnati, hard)

2016 - Halep d Kerber 6-0 3-6 6-2 (Montreal, hard)

2016 - Kerber d Halep 7-5 7-6(2) (Wimbledon, grass)

2016 - Kerber d Halep 6-2 6-2 (Fed Cup - Playoffs, clay)

2015 - Halep d Kerber 6-3 5-7 6-4 (Toronto, hard)

2014 - Halep d Kerber 6-2 6-3 (Doha, hard)

2009 - Halep d Kerber 5-7 6-2 7-5 (Saint Raphael, hard)

Compiled by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge

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