The latest American to reach a Grand Slam final, Jennifer Brady is ready to face Naomi Osaka in the championship match of the Australian Open 2021. Despite the Japanese holding a better career record and experience, Brady is unfazed by her opponent.
In conversation with WTA insider, Brady was brewing with confidence. Brady wants to first get a triumph over Osaka mentally before dominating her physically.
“When I go out there, she’s not going to overpower me. She’s not going to play unbelievable tennis where I can’t find my game. When I go out there, it’s having the mentality that I’m not beneath her. I have a chance of winning.”
Furthermore, Brady has reached her first Grand Slam final and second Grand Slam semifinal at the Australian Open 2021. So taking experience from her first semifinal back at US Open 2020, Brady is looking to pounce mentally.
“Even making semifinals here, the second week here, it solidified that it’s not a one-time thing, just mentally for myself. Knowing that I belong here, I belong at this level, I’ve earned the right to compete for Grand Slam titles four times a year.”
Jennifer Brady on learning from her earlier US Open 2020 clash with Naomi Osaka
The US Open 2020 semifinal was the last meeting between Brady and Osaka. It was a tight contest which Osaka narrowly got past. But there was a lot of learning from that loss for Brady. The American now has the self-belief that her racquet will do the talking in the finals.
“Having confidence from that match that I played against Naomi in the semis, I think that match may have changed my life and my outlook on how I approach showing up at Grand Slams.”
“I know for sure I’ll come out there nervous and put expectations on myself. It’s about settling into the match and not losing that self-belief that I can win. If I lose that, then I have no chance.”
Osaka leads the head-to-head against Brady. On paper, Osaka looks way ahead of Brady with three Grand Slam titles and former World No.1 ranking. But irrespective of that Brady isn’t looking at the past and instead, looking at the specific match.
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