It has been a marvellous two weeks of action in the women’s side of the draw. There has been twists and turns that have left fans’ falling in love with the sport more and more with each passing day. However, much like any other Grand Slam, there can only be one winner, and that will be decided in a clash between Marketa Vondrousova and Ashleigh Barty.
Very few punters at the beginning of the tournament could have possibly predicted that these two players would be the two competing for one of the most prestigious Grand Slam titles of the year. However, that is sport, and this is why we love it. The one word that perfectly seems up both players’ route to the final is nerveless. They have been unshaken throughout their run to the final, but something will have to give on the clay surface on Saturday afternoon.
Vondrousova has been faultless throughout the competition, and the 19-year-old from the Czech Republic will be looking to crown her coming of age performances with one final push to win her maiden Grand Slam title. In fact, this will be her first Grand Slam final, with her previous best outing coming in her run to the fourth round of the US Open last year. She beat Wang Yafang and Anastasia Potapova in the opening two rounds. This was followed up by a 6-4, 6-4 win over 28th seed Carla Suarez Navarro. Her prize for that victory was a clash with one of the highest ranked players remaining in the competition in Anastasija Sevastova. The Czech produced a memorable hour of tennis to comprehensive beat the number 12 seed 6-2, 6-0. A victory over Petra Martic set up a mouthwatering clash with Johanna Konta. Despite the outpouring of support for the British player, it was the 19-year-old who kept her nerve and played on the long-game to produce errors from Konta. She was victorious again in straight sets to set up a monumental final.
It will be Barty that will be the heavy favourite with BetXChange to win the final, as the Australian player is ranked at eighth in the world. However, while Vondrousova has eased through every stage of the competition; that has been the complete opposite for Barty. She has been sent to a third set on two occasions and needed a tie break to get through one of these match-ups. She effectively navigated her route to the round of 16 stage by beating the unseeded duo of Danielle Collins and Andrea Petkovic. However, she needed to keep her nerve in the following round to see off Sofia Kenin in the third set. A comfortable win over Madison Keys followed this, and she went into her semi-final clash with 17-year-old Amanda Anisimova as the heavy favourite. However, the teenager put in a marvellous showing and forced Barty to a third set. Ultimately, Barty’s cool head under the pressure and experience of the situation ensured that she progressed with a 7-6, 6-3, 6-3 win.
Head to Head
This will be the third match between the two players, with Barty coming out on top on both the previous meetings. Furthermore, she won on both occasions. However, the surface could be a deciding factor, and this will be the first time that they have met on clay.