Novak Djokovic’s 3-2 defeat of last year’s winner Stan Wawrinka has set up a mouth-watering Australian Open Final with Andy Murray, who looked extremely impressive in despatching Tomas Berdych 3-1 on Thursday.
Djokovic is priced-up as short as 2/5 – but should he really be that short to beat an in-form Murray?
Read our analysis and tennis betting tips below:
Djokovic and Murray have played 23 times with Djokovic notching 15 wins and Murray 8 wins. The 19 matches on hard-courts, similar to the ones used here, have seen Djokovic emerge triumphant 13 times and Murray 6 times.
Djokovic has also won their last four head-to-heads, and their last 7 head-to-heads on hard courts. Murray split those wins with a win on grass.
The two of them have also met in five hard-court finals with Djokovic winning four of them, which included the Australian Open finals in 2011 and 2013.
However, the case for backing Murray is based on his defeats of Djokovic in the 2012 US Open final and also the 2013 Wimbledon final, since when he has been plagued with injuries.
Murray’s finish to the 2014 season was also very impressive, and he confirmed that form with an early 2015 win in Abu Dhabi. His level of fitness and range of shots has also been visually impressive on his way to the final, as was his change of tactics against Berdych when he adopted an aggressive style of play which would have had anyone in trouble. Perhaps more significant though is his happy demeanour both on and off court. Djokovic may well win, but in Murray he faces his first opponent of the tournament capable of matching his fitness, athleticism, stroking making capabilities and tactical awareness – and there’s no way Murray should be 5-times the price of his opponent.
3 points Murray to win @ 2/1
Both Djokovic and Murray have taken at least one set off each other in their last four five-set matches, and two of those matches have ended up 3-2 (one victory each). As both players currently look at the peak of their powers, it may well be a similar result here, and backing 3-2 for either player to win may prove a clever play.
1 point Murray to win 3-2 @ 7/1
1.5 points Djokovic to win 3-2 @ 11/2
First Set Betting
Murray and Djokovic have both taken the first set on two occasions in their last four five-set encounters. However, Murray is again odds against and again looks the value play.
3.5 points Murray to win the first set @ 6/4