Conditions in Madrid lend themselves to the big servers, so it comes as no surprise that Barty and Sabalenka are the two women to have made it to the final.
Both players are at the top in most of the serve categories for the season with Barty sitting at the summit of the service points won leaderboard (64.3% success rate) and Sabalenka close behind in fourth place (62.4% success rate).
They’re both in the top three on the aces leaderboard in 2021, with Barty at the helm and Sabalenka two spots adrift.
Barty has struck a tournament-leading 35 aces so far this week in Madrid but is well aware of the firepower her opponent is expected to bring in the final.
“She's played an exceptional week thus far. She's been extremely dominant from the scorelines I have seen,” Barty said of Sabalenka.
“For her, it's serving and first shot, being able to control the point. That gives her freedom on return games to be more aggressive and to really knuckle down. The balance for her must be really good this week.
“The challenge is to get yourself into a position where she's not controlling the court. It's about neutralising as best you can for me, changing the pace, being aggressive when I have to be, running when I have to as well. It's a massive challenge.”