The Chinese player is probably the best tennis player nobody talks about because she has been proving her qualities for a while. She finished in the Top 30 on the WTA Tour two years ago and in the Top 20 after last year, and with this run in Melbourne, she will find herself in the Top 10.
She's a very consistent baseliner with an excellent serve, making her a deadly combination on courts like these. Part of her good run has been a very favorable draw because she didn't face a single player ranked in the Top 50.
That's been very different for Dayana Yastremska, who bested several notable players such as Marketa Vondrousova, Victoria Azarenka, and Linda Noskova, who bested Iga Swiatek.
She's been amazing from the baseline and is actually a qualifier who is still in the running to match Emma Raducanu's incredible achievement - being a qualifier to win a Grand Slam.
Yastremska and Zheng have never played against each other, but they're an interesting matchup on paper. They play somewhat similarly, relying heavily on playing from the baseline, as neither has too much variety outside of that.
Zheng's ranking and results obviously show that she's more consistent with it. Even so, I do think Yastremska has more hitting potential, meaning that she's more likely to hit an effective shot than the Chinese player. The serve is far better for Zheng, but she can struggle to hit it consistently.
It's a matchup that is almost impossible to predict because Yastremska can play amazingly and poorly, depending on the day. She seems 'in the zone' right now, so we'll assume that she plays well. On her best day, I think she wins this one, so I'll be back for the upset.
Prediction: Dayana Yastremska to win in three sets.