Naomi Osaka vs Jennifer Brady - 2021 Australian Open Women's Singles Final
Saturday February 20th, 2021 / 4:30am EST
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Third seeded Naomi Osaka of Japan faces #22 seed Jennifer Brady in the 2021 Australian Open Final. The match is scheduled to be played on Saturday February 20th, 2021 at 4:30am EST. They have played each other three times with Osaka leading the head to head series 2-1.
Will Brady be able to pull off the stunning upset or will Osaka claim her fourth Grand Slam title?
Naomi Osaka was the favorite for this event heading into this event and she has confirmed that tag with some impressive tennis over the past two weeks. Apart from a tough battle against Garbine Muguruza where she was down match points, she has hardly put a foot wrong, winning the other matches decisively in straight sets. She dominated Serena Williams in the Quarter-Final, winning 6-3, 6-4 in just over an hour. She has been serving well throughout, being aggressive from the baseline and not letting her opponents get into any rhythm. When she is in this type of form she is very tough to beat, especially with this momentum behind her. She enters this match as the heavy favorite, having never lost a match in a Grand Slam event beyond the Quarter-Finals.
World number 24 Jennifer Brady has also been impressive here in Melbourne, finding herself in her first Grand Slam Final. Not many would have predicted that she would still be here at this stage but she has displayed tremendous grit to get through tough three set matches against Jessica Pegula and Karolina Muchova in the Semi-Finals. Like Osaka she is a powerful baseline player, using her strong serve and forehand to dictate play from the baseline. She was a bit wasteful in her win over Muchova, committing 38 unforced errors and had a lowly first serve percentage of 50%. She will have to improve on those areas to have any chance in this match.
While Brady has done well to reach this far, her run will end here. Naomi Osaka has been the most consistent hard court player over the past three years and has never lost in a Grand Slam event when she has reached the Quarter-Finals. I expect a big-hitting match but the mental strength of Osaka will be too much for the American to handle. Naomi Osaka to win.