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S. Kenin (USA)
G. Muguruza (ESP)
|S. Kenin (USA) (14)||4||6||6|
|G. Muguruza (ESP)||6||2||2|
|Set won by S. Kenin||6 - 2||S. Kenin leads 2 to 1|
|Set won by S. Kenin||6 - 2||S. Kenin has tied the match at 1 set all|
|Set won by G. Muguruza||4 - 6||G. Muguruza leads 0 to 1|
Spaniard Garbine Muguruza will look to win her third grand slam title and maiden Australian Open when she plays rising American star Sofia Kenin. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match from 7:30pm (AEDT).
Garbiñe Muguruza, who arrived here recovering from a virus and unseeded in a slam for the first time since 2014, will play young American Sofia Kenin, the 14th seed who committed the crime of beating Barty 7-6 (8-6), 7-5 on the hottest day of the tournament.
The heat and the disappointment had barely faded when up stepped Muguruza, elegant and feisty in equal measure, to save two set points in each frame to upset Simona Halep 7-6 (10-8), 7-5 in the second semi-final.
Both were close, competitive matches. Both winners deserved to go through. Muguruza has come a long way in Melbourne since she was bagelled in her opening set of the tournament by qualifier Shelby Rogers.
The 26-year-old needed three sets to get past Rogers and Ajla Tomljanovic in the first two rounds, but she’s since beaten four seeded players, including three in the top ten, to reach her first final at the Australian Open.
She showed impressive resilience to overcome Halep on Thursday. After saving four points in the first set, she fought back from 3-5 in the second to come out on top against a player who had not dropped a set in the entire tournament.
Kenin was similarly strong in saving two set points in both of her sets against local favourite Barty. On her way to Saturday’s final she also beat 15-year-old prodigy Coco Gauff, who knocked out Venus Williams and defending champion Naomi Osaka, and Ons Jabeur, who had beaten Johanna Konta and Caroline Wozniacki.
The No. 14 seed’s previous best at a grand slam was the fourth round of the French Open last year, but she did reach four WTA finals in 2019.
Muguruza is 7-4 in career singles finals, having won six of the last seven she’s been in.
This will also be her fourth major final. She has won the last two, most recently at Wimbledon in 2017, so she’s considerably more experienced than her opponent in terms of playing at this level.
The 21-year-old Kenin has won their only previous meeting, though, when she triumphed 6-0, 2-6, 6-2 in Beijing last year.
This should be a tough final, to say the least. Both players are among the most competitive on tour, with Muguruza in particular very difficult to beat when she gets on a roll at majors, as exemplified by her career success to date. Kenin will certainly fancy her chances, though, and shouldn’t be overawed by the occasion. In an upset Kenin should win a tight three-setter en route to her maiden Australian Open title.
Kenin in three sets.
Time: 7:30pm (AEDT)
Venue: Rod Laver Arena
TV: Channel Nine
Odds: Kenin $2.39, Muguruza $1.56