So it’s time for the US Open 2018 and to borrow from the great Grecian philosopher Tsitsipas who recently Tweeted with a photo of himself “The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.”
What exactly are we thinking?
Well, in the case of Stefanos, we’re thinking we can give him a little leeway when plagiarising Einstein on Twitter. After all, he is only 20 and at that young age he’s played some spectacular tennis this year, reaching recent ATP 500 and Masters finals, only losing to an all-guns-blazing Nadal in both events. The Greek world no. 15 is a similar price to Kyrgios but clearly has a far better (and apparently deeper thinking) head on his shoulders, and we think he could be the dark horse of Flushing Meadows at 50/1.
With Djokovic due to meet Federer in the QFs, the aforementioned Rafael Nadal could be a safer option at 3/1 if you’re looking for a shorter wager. But with no ATP player in recent slams looking anywhere near invincible, it could be the year an outsider makes a name for himself.
On the WTA side of things it’s finally time to see if Serena can win a Slam alongside being a first time celebrity mother/TV documentary star/the face of Tempur beds/Vogue front cover stalwart. But take away the limelight and Williams hasn’t lifted the crown here since 2014 and after her disappointing performance in the Wimbledon final (straight sets loss to Kerber) we are surprised she’s leading the betting at 6/1.
Some traders at Jabet are talking up Sloane Stephens at 10/1 (in from 14s). She may be a big match player and the defending champion, but considering she has recently lost to Vekic, Mertens and Petkovic, there are some undeniable question marks at the relatively short price.
Halep, on the other hand, looks like the player to beat at 7/1. She’s clearly historically always put an immense amount of pressure on herself to win a Slam and now she has finally pulled it off at Roland Garros, surely her confidence can only soar on the big stage.
Aryna Sabalenka has the kind of nigh-on maniacal focus and drive that saw Jelena Ostapenko win Roland Garros. At 50/1 the Belarusian could well be a bet as she has the power to hit through anyone on her day. If she can get past Kvitova in the 3rd Rd then people will really start to take notice.
Wozniacki could be great value if, and it is a decent sized if, she isn’t injured. She retired a set down to Kiki Bertens in the 1st Rd of Cinci, but Bertens went on to lift the title and Woz would, at this stage in her career, be looking to keep her eye on winning another GS at all costs. Hence the 40/1 seems like a very enticing proposition if you’re willing to gamble that modern conditioning and recovery should have her right for her 1st Rd match against Samantha Stosur.
And our Wildcard longshot? Bouchard recently tweeted a photo of her sat on a tennis court saying “just your bi-monthly reminder I actually do still play tennis.” Having consequently only dropped 7 games in Qualifying for the Main Draw, maybe there is actually something in this Tweet other than a self depreciating gag. Perhaps the old “know thine self” saying could come into fruition for the spotlight-loving Canadian. So at over 200 to 1, why not? And then all that’s left to do is get the Lazyboy out the attic, put the Bud Light on ice and get ready for some glass smashing renditions of the Star Spangled Banner.