Australian Open 2021 Final: Naomi Osaka vs Jennifer Brady Preview, Prediction and Head-to-Head

Published 02/19/2021, 2:00 AM EST
Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, Japan’s Naomi Osaka after winning her semi final match against Serena Williams of the U.S. REUTERS/Loren Elliott


American tennis star Jennifer Brady slew the giant-killing Karolina Muchova in the second women’s semifinal of the Australian Open on Thursday, setting up a mouthwatering title clash with World Number 3 Naomi Osaka for Saturday.

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It has the makings of a fascinating showdown between someone who has yet to taste Grand Slam glory and one who already has three titles to her name and is gunning for a fourth.

Osaka has a 2-1 head-to-head lead over Jennifer Brady

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Many would say that Osaka’s win over Slam Queen Serena Williams, twice in two Majors now after the championship victory at the 2018 US Open, should tip the scales slightly in her favor going into Saturday’s final.

However, Brady’s win was no less impressive as it came against the high-flying Czech who was coming off a stunning upset victory over top women’s seed and World Number 1 Ashleigh Barty.

While the 25-year-old dropped a set on her way to reaching the final, the win itself would have given a world of belief and confidence going into the Osaka clash.

Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 18, 2021, Jennifer Brady of the U.S. celebrates winning her semi final match against Czech Republic’s Karolina Muchova REUTERS/Jaimi Joy

What’s more, the 24-ranked Brady isn’t too badly placed when it comes to her head-to-head record against the reigning US Open champion.

The American currently trails Osaka 1-2 in three clashes. Their last meeting came in the semifinal of the US Open last year, and it was a close affair as the match went to three sets before the Japanese managed to close out a win.

Naomi Osaka and Jennifer Brady are tied 1-1 in hardcourt battles

Another interesting piece of trivia, considering that the Australian Open is played on hard courts, is that the two are tied 1-1 in terms of matches played on concrete surfaces.

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Brady had stunned Osaka in straight sets in a WTA hardcourt event in the US in 2014. Also, her defeat in the US Open last-four would, if anything, make the 25-year-old more determined to even the score at Melbourne Park.

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However, the head-to-head count hints at an even contest, Osaka’s scintillating performance against a fiercely motivated Serena does as also her superior ranking does make her a clear favorite in the final.

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Priyabrata Chowdhury

830 articles

Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.

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