Australian Open 2020 Women's Final, Kenin vs Muguruza HIGHLIGHTS: American Sofia Kenin counter-punched her way back from a set down against Garbine Muguruza to win her first Grand Slam title at the Australian Open with a 4-6 6-2 6-2 win on Saturday. The 21-year-old Kenin, seeded 14th at Melbourne Park, converted her second match point against the twice Grand Slam champion, who double-faulted on the final point, to end an engrossing contest that lasted more than two hours. Kenin and Muguruza produced a fitting and intense final under the closed roofs of a packed Rod Laver Arena.
Muguruza had arrived in Melbourne suffering from a virus that forced her to quit the Hobart International, but the Spaniard was soon back to playing to her strength which helped her reach the top of the women's rankings in 2017. Some of the inconsistency that led to her slipping to 36th in the rankings last year resurfaced against Kenin, however, as the Spaniard blew hot and cold with her serve, getting 57% of her first serves in while mixing her nine aces with eight double faults.
Feb 1, 2020 4:40 pm (IST)
Kenin on winning her 1st Grand Slam title
My dream has officially come true, I can’t even describe this feeling. It’s so emotional and I worked so hard. I’m just so grateful to be standing here. Dreams come true. If you have a dream, go for it and it’s gonna come true.
I have to say, it has been incredible playing out here in this environment, this court brings you energy. The crowd is what makes it special. We play for you guys, that’s the show. Thank you for coming.
Feb 1, 2020 4:20 pm (IST)
Sofia Kenin Beats Garbine Muguruza | Sofia Kenin beats Garbine Muguruza 4-6 6-2 6-2 to win her first Australian Open title!
Sofia Kenin of the United States has beaten Garbine Muguruza of Spain to win the Australian Open for her first Grand Slam title.
Kenin was seeded 14th and had never been past the fourth round of a major tournament until now.
Kenin reached the first Grand Slam final of her career by beating No. 1 Ash Barty in the semifinals.
Muguruza is a former No. 1-ranked player who won the French Open in 2016 and Wimbledon in 2017.
Sofia Kenin breaks Garbine Muguruza | Sofia Kenin breaks Garbine Muguruza to take 4-2 lead in the 3rd set! The No.14 seed is showing some commitment, as she chases down every shot and is helped by some poor play from the Spaniard.
Sofia Kenin Holds Serve | Garbine Muguruza and Sofia Kenin again held serve... with some difficulty. The Spaniard had raced to a 40-love lead but was pranced around the court by the American, who saved five break-points and went onto to take the game.
Kenin is growing in confidence with every strike. Muguruza though is desperately looking to find her mojo.
Kenin 4-6 6-2 3-2 Muguruza
Feb 1, 2020 3:50 pm (IST)
Kenin and Muguruza Hold | Sofia Kenin and Garbine Muguruza both have started third and final set positively. The baggage of the previous two in the past no. They hold seve for now. The Spaniard with some difficulty one might add.
Kenin 4-6 6-2 1-1* Muguruza
Feb 1, 2020 3:45 pm (IST)
Feb 1, 2020 3:40 pm (IST)
Sofia Kenin Takes 2nd Set | Sofia Kenin breaks Garbine Muguruza and takes the second set 6-2!
The 14th seed doesn't even break a sweat to force the match into the third set. Muuruza is faltering as Kenin is constantly creeping up to the net and finishing off the points early.
Decider up next.
Kenin 4-6 6-2 Muguruza
Feb 1, 2020 3:31 pm (IST)
Garbine Muguruza Holds Serve | Garbine Muguruza managed to hold serve after Sofia Kenin broke her second game in the second set. The American let out a cry after taking holding on her serve.
Sofia Kenin breaks Garbine Muguruza | Sofia Kenin breaks Garbine Muguruza on the second serve in the second set to take a 3-1 lead. can the 14th-seeeded American take advantage and make a comeback in the final? Or will the Spanish star break back and even thing again... as she did in the first set.
Kenin 4-6 3*-1 Muguruza
Feb 1, 2020 3:19 pm (IST)
SET 1 STATS -
Feb 1, 2020 3:11 pm (IST)
The Spanish has taken a set towards the trophy! Garbine Muguruza takes the first set 6-4 in 52 minutes. Muguruza broke Kenin early on but the American fought back to get on level terms only to be broken again in the very next game. Muguruza then served out the set with ease.
Sofia Kenin Breaks Back Garbine Muguruza | The American is pumped as she breaks back Muguruza to level up the first set once more. Now she will serve for an advantage in the set.
Muguruza Breaks Kenin Again | Kenin is livid with herself. She has let Muguruza back into this one.
Kenin 4-5* Muguruza
Feb 1, 2020 2:57 pm (IST)
Sofia Kenin fends off four break points to hold her serve and keep the first set alive. Muguruza was totally going for a double break but could not achieve it with Kenin fighting them all off.
Kenin 3-4* Muguruza
Feb 1, 2020 2:32 pm (IST)
Garbine Muguruza Breaks Sofia Kenin | Muguruza gets an early break. Kenin fended off two break points but Muguruza got a third-time lucky and took a lead in the first set. Muguruza smacked Kenin's second serve with a backhand winner to earn herself the break point and then the American sent her backhand wide to get broken.
Kenin 2-1* Muguruza
Feb 1, 2020 2:20 pm (IST)
Kenin vs Muguruza Starts | Sofia Kenin serve-starts the women's singles final of the Australian Open and straight-up took a 40-0 lead. She lost one point in that service game after she tried to draw Muguruza to the net but she held her serve with ease, despite not having a big serve.
Sofia Kenin and Garbine Muguruza have played each other only once before where the American came out victorious. They played each other last year when Muguruza had a terrible season after a brilliant 2018.
Kenin leads Muguruza 1-0 in their head-to-head record. Kenin defeated Muguruza 6-0, 2-6, 6-2 (Beijing 2019, hard court)
Feb 1, 2020 1:44 pm (IST)
Nation: United States
World ranking: 15
Grand Slam titles: 0
WTA titles: 3
ROAD TO FINAL:
First round: beat Martina Trevisan (Italy) 6-2, 6-4
The Moscow-born American, coached by her father Alexander, is chasing a maiden Grand Slam crown in her first appearance in a title clash.
After a gritty performance to overcome teen sensation Coco Gauff in the fourth round, Kenin’s fierce, counter-punching style was on full display again in her stunning semi-final victory over top seed Ash Barty.
Feb 1, 2020 1:41 pm (IST)
World ranking: 32
Grand Slam titles: 2 (French Open 2016, Wimbledon 2017)
WTA titles: 7
ROAD TO FINAL (prefix denotes seeding):
First round: beat Shelby Rogers (US) 0-6, 6-1, 6-0
Second round: beat Ajla Tomljanovic (Australia) 6-3, 3-6, 6-3
Third round: beat 5-Elina Svitolina (Ukraine) 6-1, 6-2
Arrived at the Australian Open feeling the effects of a virus that forced her out of the Hobart International, but the explosive Spaniard has steadily improved to rediscover the form that took her to the top of the rankings in 2017.
A reunion with coach Conchita Martinez at the start of the season has also helped her shed some of the inconsistency that led to her slipping to number 36 at the end of last year.
Feb 1, 2020 1:37 pm (IST)
USA's Sofia Kenin (14th seed) and Spaniard Garbine Muguruza (unseeded) play each other in the women's singles final of the Australian Open at the Rod Laver Arena for a first title in Melbourne. While for Kenin this is her first Grand Slam final, Muguruza has been the champion at French Open and Wimbledon.
Round and round it goes. Where it will stop, nobody knows 🤷♀️
Sofia Kenin (L) and Garbine Muguruza. (Photo Credit: News18)
Kenin came to the match with a game plan, mixing deft drop shots with her deep forehand groundstrokes to catch Muguruza by surprise initially. But the Spaniard soon found her range and converted her third breakpoint in the third game to nose ahead in the opening set. Kenin, who beat Ash Barty in the semi-final despite trailing the world number one for most of the match, refused to throw in the towel and boosted her confidence by saving four break points to hold the seventh game.
She was rewarded for her tenacity in the next game with two consecutive double faults from Muguruza that gave the American a break back, and brought the set back on serve. But the Spaniard came out firing on all cylinders to break the Moscow-born Kenin again and took the opening set when her opponent missed the sideline with her forehand.
Kenin took the court in the second set with renewed vigour as the power behind her shots went up a notch. She got the break in the fourth game and then a confident hold gave her a 4-1 lead.
There was no comeback for Muguruza from there as the American levelled the match with the second break of her serve. The intensity of the deciding set rose considerably with Muguruza slapping her thigh to egg herself on while Kenin was almost reduced to tears out of frustration at some of her shots.
Down 0-40 in the fifth game and with her back to the wall, Kenin probably produced her best tennis. She painted the sidelines with three scorching winners while also producing an ace to hold serve for 3-2.
A fifth double fault from the Spaniard gave Kenin a 4-2 lead, and she was suddenly within striking distance of victory, which she sealed by breaking her opponent again.
Spaniard Muguruza lost her only prior meeting with Moscow-born Kenin, in Beijing last year, and knows the American will be no pushover. "I think she's playing great. I think since a while she's just progressing up in the rankings and in the results," said Muguruza. "So I think she deserves to be in the final with the tennis she has been showing."