2022 Women’s Australian Open Preview

January 15, 2022
The playing field in women’s tennis has been more level over the last several years than it has been in decades. Fifteen women have teamed up to win the last 24 majors, and the only two women with more than two major wins in that stretch are Angelique Kerber and Naomi Osaka. That means the 2022 Australian Open is far more open on the women’s wide than the men’s side, as there are several women that could claim this major in Melbourne. The Favorite Ashleigh Barty is the top seed entering the 2022 Australian Open. Barty has never won the Australian Open, but she did reach the semifinals of this tournament in 2020. The winner of the 2019 French Open and the most recent Wimbledon. She has been the No. 1 ranked player in women’s tennis since September 2019, and she has won 14 singles titles in her career. Barty has won 11 of those titles over the last three years, so it won’t be easy to take her down despite her lack of success at the Australian Open. Top Contenders Incredibly, Naomi Osaka might not make the quarterfinals. After taking off much of last year, she was given the No. 13 seed for this tournament, placing her in the same section of the bracket as Barty. However, Osaka certainly can’t be discounted given her track record on hard court. She has been the most successful women’s tennis player since 2018, winning four majors in that span. Osaka won the US Open in 2018 and 2020, and she claimed the Australian Open in 2019 and 2021. Garbine Muguruza was the only opponent to take Osaka to a third set last year, as she took down her other six foes in straight sets. Although she has only won one major, Iga Swiatek is someone to be feared. The 20-year-old has shown a lot of promise, and Swiatek will be the No. 7 seed in this event. Swiatek won the 2020 French Open, and she has won three singles titles in her short professional career. However, Swiatek has not made it past the fourth round in any other Grand Slam event other than the French Open. Longshots to Watch Garbine Muguruza is the No. 3 seed at the Australian Open, but she hasn’t been getting a lot of respect. Muguruza has 10 career WTA titles, and she won the 2016 French Open and the 2017 Wimbledon. It’s been five years since she won a major, but she made it to the finals of the 2020 Australian Open and the 2021 US Open. The 28-year-old is coached by the great Conchita Martinez, but she has only made it past the quarterfinals of this competition once since her debut in 2013. No one is giving reigning US Open champion Emma Raducanu much of a chance either. Raducanu made history by becoming the first qualifier to win a major in the Open Era last year, and she only dropped 15 games in her first four matches. The teenager received a dream bracket, but she made the most of it by not dropping a single set on her way to the title. Raducanu is making her Australian Open debut, and she has been given the No. 17 seed.

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