Novak Djokovic goes for his eighth Australian Open title on Sunday against Dominic Thiem, who is still searching for his first Grand Slam crown but looks more primed to break the duck than ever before.
We give you all the info you need to know ahead of the 2020 Australian Open men’s final at Melbourne Park.
World ranking: 2
Career-high ranking: 1
Career singles titles: 77
Grand Slam titles:16
World ranking: 5
Career-high ranking: 4
Career singles titles: 16
Grand Slam titles: 0
Novak Djokovic has been in typically superb form this season already, which should come as no surprise as he seems to save his best for Australia.
He led Serbia to the inaugural ATP Cup title in Sydney before coming to Melbourne and barely losing a set.
Will Djokovic prevent a changing of the guard? pic.twitter.com/OcGPG80i7U
— ATP Tour (@atptour) January 30, 2020
Thiem has not quite matched those levels from Djokovic, and comes into the final on the back of two tough four-set wins over Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zvevev.
However, any win over such opposition needs to be taken very seriously.
Thiem also finished the 2019 season strongly at the ATP, where he outperformed, and even defeated, Djokovic.
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 31, 2020
The pair have met a totla of 10 times so far, and the head-to-head is closer than a lot of people probably think.
Djokovic shades it, but only just, having won six of the ten.
Thiem has actually won four of the last five matches, although on;y one of those has been on hardcourt.
In fact, that win for Thiem at the ATP Finals was the only time he has beaten Djokovic away from clay.
He does have a Grand Slam win over the Serb though, beating him in the French Open semi-final last season.
What they’ve said
Novak Djokovic: Dominic has been there [in a Grand Slam final] a couple times.
The younger players now coming up and challenging us oldies to get to the Grand Slam finals – it’s happening already.
I think it’s good for sport…it’s going to happen. Whether it’s this year we’re going to have a new Grand Slam champion or next year, but it’s very soon.
Dominic Thiem: It’s absolutely his comfort zone here.
He always plays his best tennis in Australia since many, many years. So I’m expecting that as well in the finals.
For sure he’s the favourite. I mean, he won seven titles here, never lost a final, going for his eighth one.
But I try to take my experience what I made in the last two major finals and try to improve myself even more.
Djokovic is the odds-on favourite to win the Australian Open final, with Thiem priced at around 3/1 with most bookies.
The first set may be crucial, and you feel Thiem may have to win it if he’s going to be lifting the trophy after the final point.
He is 2/1 to win the first set, but again Djokovic is the strong favourite at 4/11 with Bet365.
The Serb started slowly against Roger Federer in the semis though, and together with Thiem’s energy that may make the 2/1 pretty decent value.
It’s always tough to bet against Novak Djokovic, and that is even truer when he is in Australia.
Rafael Nadal, no less, has been comprehensively outclassed by Djokovic in their last two meetings down under, so that underlines the size of the task facing Thiem.
However, Thiem might just have enough striking power to get through Djokovic’s defences, so you wouldn’t be surprised to see him take a set, or even two from Djokovic.
Can he take three, though? That’s a tough ask. Thiem to make a serious match of it, but you have to back Djokovic to win AO title number eight.
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