Changing of the Guard? – US Open preview

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With the exception of Juan Martin del Potro in 2009 we have to go back 11 years since we had a winner of the US Open Tennis from outside the four dominant male players of this generation.

So where do we stand going into the final Grand Slam of this Tennis season, and can we finally get a breakthrough from the younger players?

Novak Djokoivc (winner 2011) is the favourite at 5/4, but the winner of this year’s Wimbledon crown hasn’t been in the greatest of form since that victory.

A third round defeat by Tsonga (6-2, 6-2) in the Masters Series event in Toronto was followed by another third round defeat by the veteran Tommy Robredo (7-6, 7-5) in the Cincinnati Masters.

Maybe more relevant to his form on the court has been his marriage after Wimbledon, and by his own admission this has taken his focus away from the courts – he has 10 days to put this right.

Next up at 4/1 we have Andy Murray (winner 2012) who is slowly returning to form after major back surgery at the start of the season, the fact that Murray has yet to reach a final in 2014, let alone win a tournament puts enough of a question mark against his chances for me.

At 5/1 we find the seemingly ageless Roger Federer who continues to play at the top of his game at the age of 33, a five times winner of the US Open (2004-2008 inc.) Federer has been by far the most consistent of the top four season.

Defeat in the final of the Toronto Masters, and a semi-final placing (at time of writing) in the current Cincinnati Masters shows Federer to be in great form in the run up to Flushing Meadows.

Rafa Nadal (winner 2010 and 2013) stands at 6/1, but hasn’t played since his exit at Wimbledon at the hands of young Australian Nick Kyrgios. Back in training now he has had to miss the two Masters Series events with a wrist injury, and there is a question mark against him even reaching the starting line for the US Open.

So with question marks surrounding three out of the four front runners in the betting can we finally get one of the youngsters coming through?

Gregor Dimitrov 14/1 looks the most likely, winner of three titles this season, and a former junior champion at Flushing Meadows (2008), the 23 year old Bulgarian is ranked 8 in the world, and is certainly going in the right direction.

Big serving Canadian Milos Raonic (20/1) also 23 should go deep in this year’s tournament as well, and should certainly improve on his R16 performance last year.

Add into the mix the likes of Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka (12/1), Toronto champion Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (25/1), and veteran Spaniard David Ferrer (80/1) it’s going to be an exciting final Slam of the year.

Action for the qualifying draw which will be covered In-Play here at William Hill begins on Tuesday 19th with the main draw commencing on Monday 25th August.

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