Tough American Sofia Kenin stands between Garbine Muguruza and a third Grand Slam title in Saturday's Australian Open women's final after a tournament of twists and turns that has defied all expectations. Few would have predicted that either Kenin or Muguruza, who has spent the past six months in a tailspin, would reach the final but they have fought their way through to stand one win from glory. The final, a rematch of their first-round match in Beijing in September, which Kenin won in three sets, promises plenty of aggression with both players thriving on taking the initiative.
Australian Open women's final facts and figures ahead of Saturday's match (x denotes seeding):
Garbine Muguruza (ESP) v Sofia Kenin (USA x14)
Head-to-head: Kenin leads 1-0
Garbine Muguruza: Age - 26; World ranking - 32; Prize money - $19,270,804; Career titles - 7; Grand Slam titles - 2; Australian Open best - Final (2020)
Muguruza has roared back to form after a wretched second half of 2019 in which she failed to win two matches in a row.
She climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in the off-season and, crucially, reunited with fellow Spaniard and fellow former Wimbledon champion Conchita Martinez as her coach.
Sofia Kenin: Age - 21; World ranking - 15; Prize money - $2,959,382; Career titles - 3; Grand Slam titles - 0; Australian Open best - Final (2020)
Kenin was born in Moscow and moved to the United States with her family as a small girl, eventually settling in Florida after starting out in New York.
Enjoyed a breakthrough year in 2019, reaching a career-high 12 and winning three WTA titles.
Paths to the final:
1st rd: bt Shelby Rogers (USA) 0-6, 6-1, 6-0
2nd rd: bt Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS) 6-3, 3-6, 6-3
3rd rd: bt Elina Svitolina (UKR x5) 6-1, 6-2
4th rd: bt Kiki Bertens (NED x16) 6-3, 6-3
5th rd: bt Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS x30) 7-5, 6-3
Semi-final: bt Simona Halep (ROM x4) 7-6 (10/8), 7-5
1st rd: bt Martina Trevisan (ITA) 6-2, 6-4
2nd rd: bt Ann Li (USA) 6-1, 6-3
3rd rd: bt Zhang Shuai (CHN) 7-5, 7-6 (9/7)
4th rd: bt Coco Gauff (USA) 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 6-0
5th rd: bt Ons Jabeur (TUN) 6-4, 6-4
Semi-final: bt Ashleigh Barty (AUS x1) 7-6 (8/6), 7-5