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Friday, 31 January 2020

Australian Open Tennis Day 13 Picks 2020- Women's Final (February 1st)

We are down to the final four at the Australian Open and on Saturday we will get to crown the first Grand Slam Champion of the 2020 season as the Women's Final is played.

Both Sofia Kenin and Garbine Muguruza have had a day to prepare for the Final and they will both be full of belief ahead of a huge match for both players. A huge improvement in their World Ranking is a bonus, but being a Grand Slam Champion is a whole different level and can spark a career.



Sofia Kenin-Garbine Muguruza over 21.5 games: This may not have been the Women's Final that most would have expected to see at the Australian Open in 2020, but it is further proof that the sport on this side of the road is very, very competitive.

Since Serena Williams won her last Grand Slam in 2017 we have had nine different Grand Slam Winners from the next eleven Grand Slam tournaments played with only Simona Halep and Naomi Osaka managing two wins in that time. Garbine Muguruza won her second Grand Slam at Wimbledon in 2017 so she will be looking for another and has the experience edge in the match.

That has not been a huge problem for Sofia Kenin so far in this tournament and her win over home favourite Ashleigh Barty in the Semi Final shows she can handle the nerves. There have been some big things expected of Kenin, but the 21 year old has not had a big impact at Grand Slam level before this tournament and so you have to credit her for the way she has been handling things match by match.

The Kenin serve has continued to fire at an unexpected level and it has helped her largely control the flow of matches. In a quality serving match in the Semi Final, I was surprised to see Sofia Kenin hang in long enough to beat Ashleigh Barty, although it was a very tight match by the numbers.

Garbine Muguruza also came through a very tight match as she edged out Simona Halep in the battle of the two time Grand Slam Champions. In that match it was the return of the Spaniard that helped her through the match as she broke the Halep serve four times, while you have to credit the Muguruza serve for becoming the first that restricted Simona Halep to less than five breaks of serve in the tournament.

It really feels like the Australian Open Final is going to be one in which both Sofia Kenin and Garbine Muguruza are going to be able to showcase their serving talents. Neither is a great returner, but they build confidence from the way they are able to serve and I do think the winner is going to be the player that can just find a way to just make a few more big returns.

In the conditions it could be another tight, competitive match like we saw in the Semi Finals a couple of days ago. Both players will be confidence behind serve and three of the last four Women's Australian Open Finals have gone the distance wth this one feeling very possible to go the same way.

Sofia Kenin beat Garbine Muguruza in three sets when they met in Beijing at the back end of last season, although they were three one-sided sets. I am not sure the match is going to ebb and flow to that degree in this one, but I would not be surprised if we need at least one Tie-Breaker and that should give this pick a chance of being a winner even if there is a close, two set match played.

Picking a winner isn't easy- Garbine Muguruza has found a better level in the tournament, but Sofia Kenin is playing with a lot of confidence at the big moments. My feeling is that the experience of the Spaniard is going to prove to be decisive, but I would be most surprised if one of these players was able to run away with the match.

MY PICK: Sofia Kenin-Garbine Muguruza Over 21.5 Games @ 1.80 Bet365 (2 Units)

Australian Open Update: 37-30, + 7.68 Units (136 Units Staked, + 5.65% Yield)

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