Player DNA: Osaka v Kvitova final match-up

  • Game Insight Group

It’s day 13 of Australian Open 2019 and history is on the line as Naomi Osaka and Petra Kvitova meet in the women's singles final.

On Saturday evening, US Open champion Osaka takes on two-time Wimbledon winner Kvitova with a first Australian Open title and the world No.1 ranking at stake.

Game Insight Group in partnership with Infosys have run the numbers from their opening six matches.

Osaka v Kvitova

46:22 (68%)
Hardcourt Grand Slam Record (wins:losses)
27:6 (82%)
7hrs 5mins
Time on Court
8hrs 51mins
163 kmh
Average 1st Serve Speed
172 kmh
150 kmh        
​Average 2nd Serve Speed
​128 kmh
​30cm inside baseline     ​2nd Serve Return Impact Position ​60cm inside baseline
​68% ​Third Shot Forehand % ​48%
​5,626 KJ ​Total Work ​8,208 KJ

Points of interest

  • ​​This will be Kvitova's first hardcourt Slam final, and the Czech has a win percentage on the surface at Grand Slam level of 68%. While impressive, Osaka's recent run of form suggests she is better suited to hardcourt play with a win percentage at Slam level of 82%.
  • Both players have aggressive game styles, and will look to apply pressure off the ground. With their groundstroke speeds fairly evenly matched, it will come down to how well they utilise that speed. Osaka has hit 69 more winners in the tournament so far, suggesting she may be more successful at utilising her groundstrokes to exploit her opponent's court position.
  • The key battle in this match-up looks to be on serve. Osaka holds a 9kmh edge on 1st serve and will look to exploit Kvitova through her serve-plus-one patterns. Kvitova, on the other hand, is averaging +22kmh on her 2nd serve when compared to Osaka - that’s a significant speed differential and will challenge Osaka's aggressive 2nd serve return position (60cm inside the baseline).
  • Interestingly, Kvitova has become less aggressive on 2nd serve return throughout the tournament, having adopted a return position well inside the baseline early in the tournament, she has slowly retreated back to return from the baseline in the quarterfinal and semifinal. Will this position change given Osaka's slower speed 2nd serve?
  • Osaka has spent 106 mins more time on court than Kvitova and has subsequently expended 2,582 KJ more energy on her way to the final. Will this play a factor if the match fi goes down to the wire?