Djokovic still the dominant force in world tennis
Djokovic is undefeated in Melbourne finals
Tsitsipas has shown he can make Djokovic work for his victories
The final is likely to go long before Djokovic prevails
Djokovic a strong favourite
A brief moment of first-round struggle against qualifier Enzo Couacaud aside, Novak Djokovic has moved easily to his tenth Australian Open final, and it's little surprise to see him the short-odds favourite, at around 1.241/4, to add a tenth Melbourne title.
Purely on the ratings, those Djokovic odds look skinny. I have him as a 1.454/9 shot, with Stefanos Tsitsipas at 3.211/5.
The market's overvaluing of Djokovic is understandable, though. Despite his age, life dramas, and waning form, Djokovic is still the best player in the world. He has won his last 16 matches, lost only seven during a chaotic 2022 season, and it's notable that he has a perfect record on the big stage in Melbourne: every time he has reached the semi-finals here, he's gone on to take the title.
Hope for Tsitsipas
Tsitsipas continues to improve as a player, though, and although he is staring at a 2-10 head-to-head record against Djokovic, he will take some heart from the fact that those two victories came outside on hard courts, and that on the two occasions the pair have met at a Grand Slam, the matches have gone to five sets.
And it's this that perhaps points us to some value in the side markets.
To date, head-to-head, the pair have used 85% of the sets available to them, suggesting that this will go long.
In those two Grand Slam encounters, both at the French Open, Tsitsipas showed that he could withstand much of the Djokovic onslaught, and so backing Five Sets at 4.57/2 is the value call.
With this in mind, supporting Djokovic to win 3-2 at around 7.413/2 makes sense. Tsitsipas might have shown great resilience in those French Open encounters - taking a two-set lead in one and coming back from a two-set deficit in the other - but ultimately Djokovic's match-winning experience shone through, and that's likely to be the case again here.
Odds of around 2.001/1 that the pair will play more than +37.5 games look value. Using a percentage-of-available-games measure, the pair use an average of 64% of the available games. That suggests an over/under midpoint of around +42.0 games.