Serena Williams battles Naomi Osaka for the 2018 U.S. Open Tennis Women’s Finals this Saturday, Sep. 8 at 4:00 pm ET. Will Serena close the door on Osaka’s bid to become the next great women’s tennis player? Check out 2018 U.S. Open Women’s Final odds, analysis, and a pick for the !
Serena Williams returns to her second straight Grand Slam Finals on Saturday when she takes on up and comer Naomi Osaka. Serena hopes the outcome is different. As a favorite in the Wimbledon’s Finals, Serena failed to win more than 3 games against Angelique Kerber in either set. Kerber took home the Wimbledon trophy plate. Will history repeat itself?
Maybe not if Williams can use her immense power to overtake Osaka the way she did overtaking Anastasija Sevastova. Sevastova had few memorable moments in the semifinals. Serena provided plenty. She dominated Sevastova with both her stunning backhand and unreal forehand. Serena sent power shot after power shot across the net. Sevastova had no time to react to any of those shots.
Osaka played with a lightness in her 6-2, 6-4 win over Madison Keys that should set her up to push Serena on Saturday. She showed great energy moving into specific spots on the court while laying perfect shots down lines and into corners. Naomi’s key to pull off the upset will be how well she reacts to the speed Serena puts on her shots.
Serena’s game, like Tiger’s on the golf course until this year, is power. Power leads to speed. Anticipation and quickness takes away Serena’s power. That’s how Osaka can pull off the upset. She can use the lightness on her feet she displayed in beating Keys to get into position much quicker than Sevastova got into position for Serena’s return shots.
Maybe because she’s only 20-years-old, she also appears to process things slightly quicker. In one shot against Keys, Osaka determined while moving to the shot that Keys had overstepped to the opposite side. Osaka sent the shot right down the line. Keys had no chance to reach it.
Shots like that could put Osaka over the top.