Why Roger Federer Will Beat Andy Murray in the Aussie Open Finals

ZipCorrespondent IJanuary 21, 2009

Roger Federer will beat Andy Murray in the Australian Open Finals.  In the process he will tie Pete Sampras for a record 14 Grand Slam titles.  

Andy Murray might have the odds and momentum in his favor, but he has yet to prove himself under the glaring microscope of a championship sports slide.  Before explaining why Federer will come out victorious, let's acknowledge some reasons why the 21-year-old Scotsman might have an edge. The operative word is "might."

Andy Murray has a 5-2 overall record against Roger and already beat him twice this year.  Therefore, Murray has confidence.

Andy Murray won the Dhabi and Doha tournaments heading into the Aussie Open beating Nadal and Federer twice and Roddick once. Therefore, Murray has momentum. 

Andy Murray, due to his recent tournament victories and success against the top players, is beginning to fully realize his potential.

Perhaps like Novak Djokovic, Murray will have learned from his U.S. Open loss to Roger and solidify himself among the greats by winning his first Grand Slam tourney. The Aussie Open tends to be a statement making tournament.

But here is why he won't—Federer is on the verge of history.  Like his golf alter-ego Tiger Woods, Roger Federer wants to be remembered as the greatest player that ever played the game.  In order to do that he needs to break Pete Sampras' all time Grand Slam record and finally capture that elusive French Open title.  With a win in Australia he can tie Pete, and then he can win the French to ensure his legendary status.

There are two ways to look at momentum and records.

Although Murray leads in the head to head match-ups, Federer does not lose easily, especially with his shot at history on the line.  Plus, considering Murray has won the last two matches, probability would say that Federer has to win eventually and what better place than in Oz.  

Third time's a charm.

Roger Federer has the heart and head of a champion. Federer knows how to will himself to win.  In his 17 Grand Slam finals appearances he has only lost four times, and all four of those losses came at the hands of the Rafael Nadal. Federer's most recent Grand Slam victory was at the 2008 U.S. Open where he beat Murray in three straight sets.  

Murray has grown as a player since that loss, but he still has some work to do if he wants to win on tennis' grandest stage.  Winning at Doha is great, but winning the big tournaments is what really counts.  Though Andy Murray has tremendous talent, he still lacks some control over his mental game.  Roger Federer on the other hand is tough as nails, especially in high pressure situations. 

Finals Prediction: Roger wins in four sets.