Ashleigh Barty has simply breezed through the Australian Open and is a red-hot favourite to also brush aside Danielle Collins in the women’s singles final.
However, Collins does have a decent head-to-head record against the home hero and has shown her battling qualities in Melbourne over the past fortnight.
We reckon 3.1 for the decider to go to three sets is a value pick to kick off our Ashleigh Barty vs Danielle Collins predictions.
Ashleigh Barty Odds
Barty, who was the pre-tournament pick in our Australian Open 2022 predictions, has two grand slam titles on her CV, prevailing at the French Open in 2019 and at Wimbledon last year.
She would not be winning out of turn at this event either, having reached the semis in 2020 in between a couple of quarter-final appearances.
The 25-year-old will be the first Australian woman in more than 40 years to play in the final and could hardly have been more impressive so far.
Barty has not come close to dropping a set all tournament and eased to a 6-1 6-3 semi-final victory over Madison Keys in only 62 minutes.
“It’s brilliant to be playing in the business end of your home slam,” said the world number one. “I’m not going to lie about that. It’s amazing.
“I think being able to experience it multiple times has been incredible, but Saturday’s going to be a new experience for me.
“So, I go out there and embrace it, smile, try and do the best that I can and whatever happens, happens.”
There was a feeling that Barty used to be fragile in tight tussles, but she is now stronger mentally and physically.
Looking at the 4.4 for the Aussie ace to prevail 2-1.
Danielle Collins Odds
Collins had to show spirit to come through a couple of close encounters in the middle rounds, coming from behind to beat Clara Tauson and Elise Mertens in lengthy three-set matches.
She finished strongly when seeing off Alize Cornet 7-5 6-1 in the quarters and again in a 6-4 6-1 semi success versus seventh seed Iga Swiatek.
The feisty American reached the last four in Melbourne in 2019 and has returned to the top of the game following endometriosis surgery last spring.
“It feels amazing,” said Collins. “It’s been such a journey and it doesn’t happen overnight.
“It’s incredible to be on this stage and especially with the health challenges. I’m just so grateful, I couldn’t be happier.”
On taking on Barty, she added: “To play against the number one player in the world in her home country, I think it’s going to be really spectacular.”
The attack-minded 28-year-old hasn’t been overawed when facing Barty before, despite being 3-1 down in career meetings.
Collins claimed a set in two of their first three encounters and won 6-3 6-4 at a warm-up event for last year’s Australian Open.
Her best chance here may be to hope the favourite shows some early nerves, so 3.4 for the American to win the first set is worth adding to our Ashleigh Barty vs Danielle Collins predictions.
BARTY beat Keys 6-1 6-3
COLLINS beat Swiatek 6-4 6-1
Head-to-head: Barty 3-1 Collins
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