US Open 2019 Betting Preview: Men’s Singles8 min read
Having landed a 16/1 winner in the final warm-up tournament in Winston-Salem, Andy Schooler delivers his US Open 2019 betting verdict – first up his look at the men’s singles, which includes a 50/1 tip.
Flushing Meadows, New York, USA (outdoor hard)
Surprise, surprise. We arrive at another hardcourt Grand Slam with the men’s singles market dominated by members of tennis’ so-called Big Four.
It has been well documented how that club, which will be down to three at the US Open as Andy Murray continues his comeback on the other side of the Atlantic, has ruled the game over the past 15 years or so and it should be a familiar face lifting the trophy in New York on September 8.
Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal look a step above all the others in this field and while 9/4 is hardly a huge price about them contesting the final here for the fourth time, it is one with a realistic chance of delivering for its backers.
King Novak of hardcourts
Djokovic has been the king of the hardcourts for the best part of decade and he’s now won nine of the last 17 Grand Slams played on the surface – a sensational strike-rate. It’s even more impressive when you consider he missed one of them through injury.
He may have ‘only’ won three tournaments this season but two have been Slams and the big-match player in him was very evident at Wimbledon where he survived two championship points before defeating Roger Federer.
There are negatives though.
The Serb was beaten by Daniil Medvedev in his only warm-up event in Cincinnati where he was troubled at times by an arm/elbow problem – worrying given such an issue kept him sidelined for so long a couple of years ago. The man himself insists all is fine.
— Michal Samulski (@MichalSamulski) August 22, 2019
My take on the Medevdev defeat is that those things can – and do – happen in best-of-three-set tennis. On that particular night, having lost the first set Medvedev was staring defeat in the face at 3-3 0-30 in the second. He decided to start booming down second serves, a tactic which did get him out of trouble and saw the match turned on its head.
However, such a tactic isn’t really sustainable for a great length of time – and I’d suggest a repeat in the best-of-five format in use in New York would only get the Russian so far.
If they meet in the quarter-finals – as they are seeded to do – expect Djokovic to gain his revenge.
Nadal in form
As for Nadal, he was impressive when winning the warm-up event in Montreal, albeit he was the only Big Four member in attendance.
He’s benefited from the draw which has put Federer in Djokovic’s half. Dominic Thiem is seeded to be Nadal’s semi-final opponent.
Expect Nadal to come through this side, although he won’t want Djokovic waiting in the final.
Nadal may lead their US Open head-to-head 2-1 but he has a woeful recent record against Djokovic on hardcourts, as highlighted visually at this year’s Australian Open final.
The data does a better job of explaining though. Djokovic has now won the last 17 sets the pair have played on a hardcourt. In that period he’s held serve 97.4