US Open Preview – Quarter by Quarter.

The last Slam of the year is about to get underway in NYC and I am buzzing. I am off to America once again for a few days to get a piece of the action. Here are my tips and recommendations as usual. Starting with the Men’s first quarter. Once again it has been a mad rush to get this done, so apologies for any errors.

First Quarter
I am already on Daniil Medvedev at 66/1 on the outright from a few weeks ago, so maybe that is clouding my judgement here but I don’t really see a bet in this quarter and I will explain why. Nole is a worthy favourite for the event and as a result the quarter. His record against Medvedev is enough to put me off backing 4/9 or shorter though and thinking that it is an absolute cert. I can’t back Medvedev myself at a top price 9/2 when he will have to beat Fritz/Nishioka and a Basilashvili/Fognini/Opelka before taking on Nole. If you were desperate for a bet on this section I would say go very small on those few but only if you are desperate to get involved. Stan hasn’t shown enough and Anderson simply doesn’t seem fit after picking up a knee injury.

Summary – No bet unless insistent where I would go for a Fritz, Nishioka or Basilashvili who can be backed at 50/1, 125/1 and 125/1. I would save your money though, I honestly won’t be getting involved here. If I do I would update you in my daily blog. It looks a two-horse race this section.


Second Quarter
There is no way I can side with Federer at odds on here. The very fact he struggled physically in the conditions against John Millman last year is enough to put me off. I will have to take my medicine should he oblige in this section, which at a top go 10/11 represents a fair chance. For me though Kei Nishikori zones in over in NYC. His form is questionable but he seems to produce his best tennis at the majors. I think people will be surprised by me tipping Kei up here and I think I am, but it makes sense to me and I will cover my ass accordingly. Alex De Minaur gave me a real go last year when I tipped him up at a big price and I will do the same again this year at 33/1. Since winning in Atlanta his form hasn’t been sensational but I’m hoping he has been saving himself for here. I did tinker with Lucas Pouille as a cover too but have talked myself out of it, I will have a fiver on Dan Evans as a fan of the Solihull born geezer instead. I wouldn’t expect to be followed in by everyone there but I won’t do too much damage at 50/1. There are a lot of good players in this quarter though, Goffin, Raonic and Coric are all there.


Summary – Kei Nishikori 10/1 as my main bet (with VC), with a smaller bet on Alex De Minaur (33/1 Betfair Sportsbook) and an even smaller one on Evo (80/1 with Totesport).

Third Quarter
This is a section littered with quality. Thiem, Tsitsipas, Nick, Bautista Agut, Auger-Aliassime and Monfils. I am going to go with Thiem and Bautista Agut here. Nick has obviously got a great chance but it is difficult to tip him up at the moment as fantastic as he was in Washington. Tsitsipas has Rublev straight away and then potentially Nick in the third round. Not great that draw. I will take the 9/2 and 7/1 here about the Austrian and the Spaniard. Thiem seems to like NYC and came close to toppling Rafa last year and Bautista Agut is a player that I am very much a fan of in terms of consistency and after putting him up at Wimbledon for his quarter, I owe him one. Thiem has a nice little section to get him into this and I am hoping for a ‘dream’ quarter-final. He has had a viral infection which is a bit of an off-put but I still think he will raise it.


Summary
– Backing Thiem at 9/2 (with VC) and Roberto Bautista Agut (13/2-7/1 (Tote and Coral).


Fourth Quarter

As in the first quarter, I won’t be getting involved in this section flat out (unless it is for a tenner). Rafa should win this, Hyeon Chung will be a nasty opponent in the third round should they meet but it looks a good draw on paper for the Spaniard. I just can’t get too excited at 8/13 and as short as 1/2. Khachanov has a chance at 14/1 and caused Rafa all sorts of problems last year, so if I did have to choose for someone outside of Nadal I would go with him. Sascha Zverev hasn’t built up enough trust again yet and Cilic, Isner and Tsonga are some way off their best form. It would be nice to see Diego Schwartzman go well here again but this is another section to stay away from as a punter.


Summary – Rafa should win this reasonably comfortably but is not worth backing at these prices. Khachanov would be the ‘interest bet’, or cover as you will find out at 14/1 with Tote. So a small bet on him.


Outright

I won’t be backing Rafa for the quarter as I will be taking the risk on the outright. He didn’t quite do it for me here last year but I will take the 3/1 Nadal on the outright and if Djoko does get beat we could be quids in. I think Djoko is the right price and I tipped him for Wimbledon at a similar level but I don’t fancy him quite as much here. I will cover on Thiem, Nishikori and Bautista Agut. As I said I was on Medvedev at 66/1 but I can’t put him up at 14/1 to you.


Summary

Rafa to win at 3/1 (general), then smaller each-way bets on Thiem at 33/1 ( a couple of firms), Bautista Agut at 66/1 (general) and Nishikori 70/1 (VC).

Now, on the Ladies event.


First Quarter
I just think it is worth taking on the front three in the betting here in Naomi Osaka, Kiki Bertens and Aryna Sabalenka. I also think it is too early for Coco Gauff still. I initially narrowed this down to four in Bencic, Goerges, Kontaveit and Suarez Navarro. I think this is wide open. There are injury concerns over some of the players I mentioned, in fact, only Goerges apparently doesn’t have a doubt. With that in mind, it will be small stakes bets on Goerges and Suarez Navarro at big prices. The Spaniard does have a back concern but she goes well in New York and could be ready to take advantage of Osaka being off. Goerges is the type of player who Bertens won’t enjoy playing in a slam and they are scheduled to meet in the third round.


Summary – Nothing major hear just a few small bets on Julia Goerges at 25/1 with VC and Carla Suarez Navarro at 33/1-40/1.

Second Quarter
This is a section that Simona Halep deserves respect in and the 2/1 is just that. I am still not sure though. She has lost in the opening round the last two years so I will go with the Toronto Champion Bianca Andreescu and former champion Svetlana Kuznetsova. Andreescu impressed massively winning on home soil and Kuznetsova made the final in Cincy, narrowly losing out to Madison Keys. Sloane Stephens usually raises her game here but I just wonder if Kuzzy might be a bit much in the second round. Petra Kvitova comes in with a lower forearm injury and Wozniacki and Muguruza have little form coming in.


Summary
– 5/1 (VC) Bianca Andreescu and a smaller bet at 16/1 (Totesport) on Svetlana Kuznetsova.


Third Quarter

I will be opposing Karolina Pliskova here and instead I’ll be siding with Madison Keys. There are some serious operators here, Sofia Kenin and Venus are in this quarter along with Elina Svitolina. Jennifer Brady may well go a couple of rounds too and Kasatkina is showing signs of form and she should take out Konta on current form in their opener. I just like the ways Keys plays at this time of year and a runners-up and semi-final spot in the last two years proves she plays well here. Add to that the title in Cincy and we are talking business. Kenin isn’t one she will relish in the third round but I think she will get the job done as she did in Cincinnati against her. Pliskova has too many bad results in her for me to trust her, I couldn’t see her getting beat in the Wimbledon quarter. She lost 13/11 to Karolina Muchova.


Summary
– Backing Madison Keys at 5/1 with VC.


Fourth Quarter

In the fourth quarter, I am not going to get involved. When I am not sure about Serena I tend to stay away. I just think Barty will come unstuck somewhere and at bigger prices, I think Sakkari, Sevastova and Swiatek have outside chances. Sevastova has some great form here but I think she may fall short. Its a no bet for me but if you want very small bets then maybe go for Sakkari and Swiatek.


Summary – A no bet for me, if Serena gets it going she will win this section but it’s impossible to know where she is at. If you want value then one of the three that I mentioned above at 20/1 – 80/1 between them.


Outright
I am going to go with Bianca Andreescu and Madison Keys as the main two and have a cover bet on Kuzzy. I will also get involved by backing Serena as I will never forgive myself if she wins but I think that is up to you. I wouldn’t put that up as a tip but my heart rules my head and I don’t see why she wont be somewhere near. It is up for grabs again though and wide open. If one of these wins and you stake accordingly it will be a nice return. Serena is basically my cover bet to win a few quid.


Summary – Main bets on Madison Keys and Bianca Andreescu at 14/1 (both general) and a very small bet on Svetlana Kuznetsova at 66/1-80/1. I will cover myself with Serena but if none of them win, it is money done for me.


Happy punting, don’t go too stupid with it and enjoy the next two weeks.


Andy Del Potro

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