Novak Djokovic has won all seven Australian Open finals he has contested, he is on a 12-match winning streak and will become world number one if successful in the Melbourne Park decider on Sunday. Against those overwhelming odds, few are giving Dominic Thiem much of a chance to wrench the title from his iron grip and clinch a maiden Grand Slam. But the Austrian, remarkably, is the one with the recent edge. Novak Djokovic is 6-4 in their career head-to-heads, but Dominic Thiem has won four of the last five.
Australian Open men's final facts and figures ahead of Sunday's match (x denotes seeding):
Novak Djokovic (SRB x2) v Dominic Thiem (AUT x5)
Head-to-head: Djokovic leads 6-4
Djokovic: Age - 32; World ranking - 2; Prize money - $140,228,279; Career titles - 77; Grand Slam titles - 16; Australian Open best - Winner (2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2019)
Novak Djokovic routinely rates the Australian Open as his favourite Grand Slam and Rod Laver Arena is without question his most successful court, with a record seven titles to his name. Perhaps the best returner in the game, he has dropped just one set en route to the final and is firm favourite to win a 17th Grand Slam and extend his 2020 win streak to 13 matches.
Thiem: Age - 26; World ranking - 5; Prize money - $22,406,618; Career titles - 16; Grand Slam titles - 0; Australian Open best - Final (2020)
The Austrian is best known as a clay-court specialist, making the last two French Open finals where he was beaten by Rafael Nadal. A baseliner with a one-handed backhand, he came through a tough five-setter in round three and showed his class by upsetting Nadal in the last eight. Coached by former world number nine Nicolas Massu, he signalled his intentions by winning five titles last year.
Paths to the final:
1st rd: bt Jan-Lennard Struff (GER) 7-6 (7/5), 6-2, 2-6, 6-1
2nd rd: bt Tatsuma Ito (JPN) 6-1, 6-4, 6-2
3rd rd: bt Yoshihito Nishoka (JPN) 6-3, 6-2, 6-2
4th rd: bt Diego Schwartzman (ARG x14) 6-3, 6-4, 6-4
Q-F: bt Milos Raonic (CAN x32) 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (7/1)
S-F: bt Roger Federer (SUI x3) 7-6 (7/1), 6-4, 6-3
1st rd: bt Adrian Mannarino (FRA) 6-3, 7-5, 6-2
2nd rd: bt Alex Bolt (AUS) 6-2, 5-7, 6-7 (5/7), 6-1, 6-2
3rd rd: bt Taylor Fritz (USA x29) 6-2, 6-4, 6-7 (5/7), 6-4
4th rd: bt Gael Monfils (FRA x10) 6-2, 6-4, 6-4
Q-F: bt Rafael Nadal (ESP x3) 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (7/4), 4-6, 7-6 (8/6)
S-F: bt Alexander Zverev (GER x7) 3-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (7/4)