Womens Australian Open Final

Image courtesy of AFP Photo/heraldsun.com.au
Victoria Azarenka defeated Kim Clijsters in the semi-final. Image courtesy of AFP Photo/heraldsun.com.au
Victoria Azarenka  will play in her first grand slam final when she faces Maria Sharapova  in the Australian Open final on Rod Laver Arena on Saturday night. The 22 year old progressed to the finale with a pulsating three set win  over defending champion Kim Clijsters on Thursday.

Standing in her way of the biggest win of her career is world number four Maria Sharapova, who won the event in 2008. The Russian dug deep in her semi-final to overcome world number two Petra Kvitova in three sets  and advance to her third Melbourne Park final.

The pair have clashed six times in their career, with the head-to-head record standing at three wins apiece. All three of Azarenka’s wins were in straight sets , while Sharapova has won in three sets when the game has gone the distance. The most recent matchup saw Sharapova win the match after Azarenka withdrew, but the two previous meetings were both won by the Belarusian. Tellingly, they were both finals and were both played on hardcourts, meaning they were under the same conditions as this match.

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