The 2018 Australian Open women’s final has gone exactly to plan according to the rankings, but not many punters expected Simona Halep and Caroline Wozniacki to both make the final.
Both players survived some tense moments in their respective semi-final matches to set up what should be one of the closest grand slam finals in recent history.
Women’s finals have the tendency to be one-sided and we have Serena Williams to thank for that, but Halep and Wozniacki are evenly matched and one of them will secure their maiden grand slam title.
We have looked at their recent results and betting movement to pick our winner for Saturday night’s final.
Bookmakers currently have #1 seed Simona Halep as the favourite, but there has been backing for the crowd favourite Carolina Wozniacki.
Simona Halep form and odds
Simona Halep has rattled off 13 consecutive wins since losing to Elina Svitolina in Singapore and it pays to note that she also lost to Wozniacki just two days prior to that.
That drop in form has been put behind her as a tournament win at Shenzhen has been followed up with some stellar tennis in Melbourne.
With the pressure of being the top seed, Halep has dealt with some pressures throughout the tournament. She needed three sets to get past feisty Brit Laura Davis and she was forced to defend match points earlier this week.
Her toughest test came in the semi-final against Angelique Kerber. The German was relatively outplayed throughout the game, but somehow managed to secure two match points over Halep.
True to her fighting style, Halep broke Kerber’s serve and subsequently won the titanic battle.
Her style matches up well against Wozniacki, who likes to stay in the rally. Halep is a power player, despite her small frame, and this often goes unnoticed by her opponents.
Caroline Wozniacki form and odds
Critics often talked about whether Caroline Wozniacki would ever win a grand slam after years of trying, but she gets her best chance to break through here.
The Danish superstar has won a plethora of tournaments around the world, but has ultimately come up short when it has counted.
She finished runner-up at both the 2009 and 2014 U.S. Open, losing in straight sets to Kim Clijsters and Serena Williams respectively, but with both of those champions missing from the draw, Wozniacki gets another chance.
Wozniacki came into the tournament having lost in the final at Auckland to Julia Goerges, but that tournament is often used primarily as a warm up.
Having lost only two sets throughout the Australian Open, the 27-year-old will feel comfortable with her time spent on the court.
She did have to fight in her semi-final match, but she frustrated her opponent into unforced errors and that’s her modus operandi.
Frustrating Simona Halep into hitting winners will be her only chance of winning and if Halep doesn’t keep a cool head, Wozniacki could finally claim her title.
Wozniacki is currently $2.20 in the head-to-head market at Sportsbet.
Halep vs. Wozniacki betting tip
We thought Simona Halep was a good bet before the tournament and we’ve seen nothing that changes our mind.
The gritty Romanian loves the power game and she often dominates the service battle. Caroline Wozniacki has a slow serve and she won’t be able to pick up free points like Halep.
She will need to keep calm throughout the match, as her temper does come into play, but she should have too much power and we’re predicting a straight sets 6-4 6-4 victory – BET NOW.