US Open betting preview week two: 5/4 Marin Cilic can be quarter master in New York
Deggsy Bilton is back with your tennis betting tips for week two of the US Open.
Our Tennis365 headline pick Rafael Nadal is still at large in New York, and he’s now clear 2/1 favourite to win the US Open.
Novak Djokovic is also still going strong in the Big Apple, but he will have to face Roger Federer before any clash with Nadal, and Federer’s form has been pretty ominous over the past week. The Swiss legend came through a highly entertaining, but ultimately one-sided, third-round clash with Nick Kyrgios and should be too hot for Aussie John Milman next.
Nadal came through an absolute thriller as he outlasted Karen Khackanov, and surviving such an epic gut check suggests the Mallorcan is in a good place to land what would be Grand Slam title number 18.
Marin Cilic has been one of the more impressive performers in the first week, and he looks appealing at 5/4 to win the third quarter.
Cilic barely got out of third gear in his first few matches but had to dig deep to see off youngster Alex de Minaur in his last match, eventually coming through 4-6, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, 7-5 after converting an eighth match point. Cilic is a fearsome foe on this type of track, and won’t be fazed by like likes of David Goffin or Kei Nishikori, who remain in his section.
Cilic won his only Grand Slam to date here in 2014, and he’s clearly hungry for more after toughing it out in his last match. He may not be a match for the absolute elite on the Tour in terms of Nadal, Federer or Djokovic, but he’s plenty good enough to win his quarter and book a semi-final berth.
Things certainly didn’t go to plan for us in the women’s event, with top seed (and our main fancy) Simona Halep losing in the first round. As a result Serena Williams is now clear favourite, and her sister Venus was wholesome in her praise of her younger sibling after their third round match, which Serena won 6-1 6-2.
“She played untouchable tennis,” crowed Venus, adding “That’s the best match she’s ever played against me.” That’s some statement given they’ve played 30 times on the WTA Tour, but I’m still unconvinced Serena is physically fit enough to take this down.
Indeed preference from here is for another American, Sloane Stephens, who the bookies see as Serena’s biggest title threat. The defending champion and No. 3 seed Stephens has looked sharp as she cruised into the second week, and with her price still bigger than 5/1 she might be worth a play in New York.
One match bet that might be of interest in the fourth round is Carla Suarez Navarro at 2/1 to beat Maria Sharapova. Sharapova has looked OK so far but her 6-3 6-2 win over Jelena Ostapenko certainly flattered her as the Latvian spewed 40 unforced errors in a typically erratic display.
Sharapova rightfully starts as favourite against Navarro but the Spaniard is the anti-Ostapenko. Solid, steady and ready to go all night of need be. Navarro upset sixth seed Caroline Garcia to reach this point and she looks a live underdog in the betting again.
Bilko’s Banker: Marin Cilic to win third quarter at 5/4 (bet365)
Best of the Rest #1: Sloane Stephens to win US Open at 11/2 (bet365)
Best of the Rest #2: Carla Suarez Navarro to beat Maria Sharapova at 2/1 (Coral)
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