US Open fourth round preview: Belinda Bencic vs Iga Swiatek
Photo: Sarah Reed/Getty Images

A blockbuster fourth round showdown is set to take place at the US Open as 11th seed Belinda Bencic takes on seventh seed Iga Swiatek.

Bencic has cruised through the first three rounds, defeating Arantxa Rus, Martina Trevisan and 23rd seed Jessica Pegula in straight sets with the loss of just 18 games in total.

Swiatek handled qualifier Jamie Loeb in the first round before surviving three-set matches against Fiona Ferro and 28th seed Anett Kontaveit to reach the Round of 16 in New York for the first time.

This is the opening match of the day on Louis Armstrong Stadium with the winner facing either unseeded American Shelby Rogers or British qualifier Emma Raducanu in the quarterfinals. 

Analysis

This is a fascinating matchup in that the quicker courts favor Swiatek. The Pole has a very powerful, accurate serve and also utilizes a kick serve quite well. That will be key against Bencic, who loves to take the ball early and on the rise.

The Swiss' backhand is her best shot and she uses it to great effect anywhere on the court. She'll want to bait Swiatek into hitting crosscourt where she can then re-direct the ball and change the rhythm of the rally.

Bencic's main weapon is her backhand and she will look to use it every chance she gets/Photo: Sarah Stier/Getty Images

Bencic is capable of turning defense into offense at any moment and that will be key against an offensive player like Swiatek, who will look to put the Swiss on the back foot. Patience is going to be important for the Pole in the rallies.

The second serve of Bencic can be picked on and she will need to protect that shot by getting in a high percentage of first serves to avoid giving Swiatek many looks to break.

Assessment

This is probably the hardest match to predict so far. Bencic comes in on fire, having won the Olympics and breezing through the draw so far while Swiatek has been pushed in her last two matches. 

What gives the Pole an advantage is that the match in Adelaide was on similar quick hard courts as to here and she loves the surface and speed exactly the way it is. If she can keep the rallies relatively short, she should find success.

Swiatek is looking for her first quarterfinal appearance at Flushing Meadows/Photo: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Both players are capable of winning the tournament and it's a shame they have to meet this early, but in what could be the best match of the tournament so far, Swiatek should come out on top in a razor-thin close affair.

Prediction: Iga Swiatek in three extremely close sets

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