The US Open is one of the four majors in tennis and the final of the season, coming after the Australian Open, French Open, and Wimbledon. It is held annually on the last Monday of August, lasting for a few weeks into September. The US Open is essentially the modern version of the US National Championship which was first held in 1881.
The tournament is played on acrylic hard courts (just like the Australian open) at the Flushing Meadows Park (Billie Jean King Tennis Center) in New York City. It is owned and organized by the USTA (United States Tennis Association) and features the top players in the world of tennis as well as qualifiers.
The US Open is the sole Grand Slam that has a tiebreaker for the fifth set unlike the other majors, in which the fifth and final set is played until one of the players wins by 2 games. The US Open is also the only major that features 16 instead of 12 qualifiers in the draw.
With 5 wins at the US Open, the great Roger Federer is a joint-record holder for most titles at Flushing Meadows, which he shares with Pete Sampras and Jimmy Connors. The Swiss maestro is always among the favourites at the US Open, although his last title came 10 years ago in 2008.
Last year’s US Open champion was Rafael Nadal, who defeated Kevin Anderson in straight sets in the final. That was Nadal’s third title at the US Open and his 17th Grand Slam. This year’s US Open will be one of the most exciting in years. With Federer’s renaissance in the past season and a half and the return of Novak Djokovic (who just won Wimbledon for the 4th time), the 2018 US Open will certainly be thrilling to watch.
Additionally, this year’s US Open may also see the long-awaited return of Andy Murray, who, if he’s in top form, will surely be among the most dangerous players in the draw.
The Return of Novak Djokovic
After enduring a horrible time during the past 2 years, Novak Djokovic finally returned to his winning ways after conquering Wimbledon this year. He did so in fashion overcoming Rafael Nadal in the semi-final and crushing surprise finalist Kevin Anderson, who previously dispatched Roger Federer and John Isner on his way to the final. Djokovic played great tennis and rightfully claimed his 13th Grand Slam, announcing his return to the Top 10 tennis players in the world.
How quickly things change in tennis – a few weeks before Wimbledon started, no one really gave Djokovic big chances considering his early exits in many tournaments this year. However, the Serbian managed to beat all odds, overcoming Nadal in a tough five-setter in the semi-finals. This title makes him a favourite for the 2018 US Open at bookies, who are giving him odds of 3/1 (SportPesa, Fun88, Ole777, ComeOn!, and BetVision). With these odds and his current form, it’s obvious that Djokovic will be a hit with punters.
So, yes, you could say that he’s back.
Can Federer End His Dry Spell?
Even though he lost in the quarter-finals of Wimbledon when everyone expected him to win the tournament, Roger Federer is still in great form and should be considered a favourite. After winning 3 Grand Slams in the past year and a half, Federer will undoubtedly try and win another, this time at the US Open for a record 6th title.
The Swiss maestro has a lot of tricks in his bag and can still hold up well with younger players at the age of 36. He’s never the underdog no matter who he faces, but questions about his fitness levels are certainly becoming a problem. He looked a bit out of sorts in the Wimbledon quarter-final, ruining a match ball against Kevin Anderson which ultimately led to his defeat. Fans are certainly hoping Federer lifts every title he plays for, but at the age of 36, that’s unlikely, even though he wins his finals most of the time.
If not for Novak Djokovic’s resurgence, Federer would be the top favourite for the 2018 US Open. At the moment, he’s number 2, being given odds of 7/2 (Ole777, Fun88, BetVision, ComeOn!, SportPesa). This means he’s hot on Djokovic’s trail and will certainly be looking to win the US Open title after a decade of failure.
Rafael Nadal’s Chances
No matter the tournament he enters or the form he’s in, Rafael Nadal is ALWAYS going to be among the top favourites. The Spaniard is certainly the best tennis player on clay the world has seen and probably second best to only Roger Federer. Now, most experts don’t consider him the biggest threat on hard courts, but could you really be so foolish to write him off?
Nadal’s chances stand at 9/2 at ComeOn!, BetVision, Fun88, Ole777, and SportPesa, putting him close to Federer and Djokovic. His odds are even more enticing than the first two favourites, so if you think Rafa has a chance (and he certainly does), you can win thousands if he lifts the title.
Andy Murray – a Darkhorse?
We’re still not sure if Andy Murray will return at this year’s US Open. He’s obviously planning to play but considering his US Open exit last year (announced 2 days prior to the tournament) and him skipping Wimbledon this year, we’re dubious about his chances.
However, bookies aren’t. At the moment, Andy Murray is being given 9/1 odds to win the US Open, putting him at the fourth spot on the list. This puts him ahead of other title favourites such as 2009 US Open winner Juan Martin Del Potro (11/1) and 2014 winner Marin Cilic, who stands at 20/1.
Can the Young Guns Finally Win A Title?
Young tennis stars such as Alexander Zverev, Dominic Thiem, and Nick Kyrgios have failed to win a Grand Slam, with Thiem coming close to it after reaching the final in this year’s French Open. Still, their form is inconsistent, which is why they aren’t considered top favourites at the tennis majors. We’re sure the time will come, but for now, Zverev, Thiem, Kyrgios, and others will have to satisfy with the underdog role.
Zverev is being given odds of 9/1 (SportPesa, BetVision, ComeOn!, Ole777, Fun88) just like Andy Murray, which we must admit is surprising. Nick Kyrgios is next on the list with odds of 20/1, while Dominic Thiem is ranked the worst of the three, being given odds of 25/1. That’s quite understandable considering that the Austrian’s best results came on clay, not hard courts.
Still, with a bit of luck in the draw, any of these three young players can win against anyone on the court. They’ve defeated players from the Top 10 before and will relish the challenge of doing it at the American major, maybe finally winning their long-awaited first Grand Slam.