The fact that Pliskova is the most likely title winner with little more than a 1-in-8 chance tells us that it is going to be another close contest for the Aussie Open women’s title. We can see that with the close forecasts of the number two and three top contenders, Svitolina and Angelique Kerber, with 11 per cent and 7 per cent title chances respectively.
The fourth pick goes to defending champion, Caroline Wozniacki, who is given a little under a 1-in-20 chance of a back-to-back win.
Will the luck of the draw make a difference for the men this year?
GIG examined the difficulty of each quarter by seeing how much the win chances of the top seed in each quarter would be helped or hindered by the quarter. How much would Nadal’s chances of reaching the semifinals change if he had drawn Djokovic’s quarter, for example?
GIG’s analysis shows two quarters stand out when it comes to the difficulty of the path they present for the top seed.
Djokovic’s quarter presents the greatest challenge, taking an average of 2 per cent away from the top seed’s forecast of a quarterfinal win.
Federer, on the other hand, got the luck of the draw as the third quarter does the most to increase the chances of a quarterfinal win, increasing those chances by over 2 per cent on average.
In the women’s draw, GIG’s analysis shows the fourth quarter is the only one to give a substantial help to its top seed and is expected to aid their chance of reaching the semifinal by 5 per cent. That makes Kerber the clear winner of the draw.
The top half, on the other hand, is equally challenging for its top seeds, Simona Halep and Naomi Osaka. Halep could have to face Kaia Kanepi, both Williams sisters and still need to beat top pick for the title, Pliskova, to survive her quarter.