The Premier level Toray Pan Pacific Open reaches its conclusion at the Ariake Coliseum in Tokyo in the early hours of Sunday morning.
Caroline Wozniacki takes on Ana Ivanovic in the championship match at 04:00 UK time after both came through their respective semi finals against Garbiñe Muguruza and Angelique Kerber on Saturday.
Wozniacki foiled my bet on Muguruza in a match that the latter could have won and at least she made for a nice in-play bet from 3.40 in to favouritism after leading by a break in the final set.
Unfortunately, the Spaniard ran out of gas and lost five straight games to the Dane at that point, but it was the right wager at those pre-match prices.
Caroline Wozniacki vs Ana Ivanovic
This final will be the seventh career meeting between Caro and Ana, but it’s their first clash in a final.
Ivanovic had to overcome a slow start to take down Angelique Kerber on Saturday, with the German wasting a 5-3 lead in the opening set before losing yet again after going a set down.
Incredibly, Kerber has now lost all 30 of her matches against top-10 ranked opposition after dropping the opening set and that clearly indicates an issue with belief at the top level for the German.
But for Ivanovic it was another good performance in the end after a slow start and on this quick surface she should have the edge in power over Wozniacki.
Muguruza also had that and was able to hit 53 winners past the Dane on Saturday, but she failed on 19 of her 23 break point chances, which proved very costly in the end for the Spaniard.
In the end, Caro was able to win in much the same vein that she has throughout her career – by being that bit more solid than her opponent at the right times – and she does have a decent record in finals in Asia.
Wozniacki has a 5-2 record in tour level finals in Asia, with a 5-2 mark overall, and the only two losses came against top-five ranked opposition.
Overall in WTA Tour finals and upward Wozniacki has a 22-14 (61%) winning mark and at Premier level she holds a 13-8 (62%) success ratio.
Ivanovic’s record in finals in Asia is 5-1, but many of them were ITF level many years ago and perhaps more relevant is her 14-7 (67%) winning record in all tour level finals and 9-4 (69%) in Premier level finals.
It’s another tight call, as the odds suggest, but preference goes to Ivanovic, who just has that little extra to her game and should be the fresher of the two after just five matches since Cincy, compared to Caro’s 12.
Back Ivanovic to beat Wozniacki at 1.76