This Top 10 showdown between world No. 4 Barbora Krejcikova and world No. 7 Anett Kontaveit features two of last year's biggest surprises. Krejcikova, a doubles superstar who jump-started her singles career with a title at Roland Garros, earned a straight-set victory over Caroline Garcia to claim her spot in this match. Kontaveit, who qualified for her first WTA Finals in November, had just won the first set against Ons Jabeur before the Tunisian retired in their quarterfinal.

Not many players on the planet are as hot as Kontaveit coming into this match, as the 26-year-old won four titles in her final eight WTA events to cap off 2021. That is part of the reason why the Estonian is a strong favorite to win this match, despite her slightly lower ranking. But not the only one.


Line Calls Jan 13 2022

Line Calls Jan 13 2022

These two have played each other just once in their careers, in round-robin play at the WTA Finals. Kontaveit turned in a masterful performance in that match, earning a 6-3, 6-4 victory in just 76 minutes. Krejcikova was unable to figure out Kontaveit’s serve, as the Czech failed to manufacture a single break-point opportunity. Both players will remember that stat, and adjust accordingly, but Kontaveit holds a decided edge in that department until proven otherwise.

Krejcikova, who ended 2021 on a bit of a cold stretch, has undoubtedly looked a bit more confident to start the year. But this is a step up in class from Garcia and Jacqueline Cristian, her two opponents thus far in Sydney. Kontaveit is surging, continues to serve extremely well, and she rips her groundstrokes across the court with margin.

While it’s never fun to back a big favorite, it’s hard to find many reasons not to take Kontaveit to win this one outright. She’ll be hungry to add another trophy to her collection while also heading into the Australian Open with some serious momentum. But even without those factors, it's a match-up she can exploit.

Line Call: Kontaveit to win (-186)