Australian Open Preview

It’s a bit late to be getting to this since the first round is almost in the books, but there has been other pressing stuff to cover so a look at the Aussie Open hasn’t happened yet. I was spurred to do it today by a comment on yesterday’s post. Without further ado:

Men’s Side

Andy Murray – He’s the favorite, or at worst the co-favorite, but I really don’t trust him here. He’s been red hot so far this year, but he lost in the first round last year, he’s flighty and unstable, and I don’t trust him to stay at his best through the grueling intensity of a major. He’ll get through to the second week, but I don’t see him making it as far as the finals.

Rafael Nadal – I don’t believe that he is healthy, and I don’t like how he has played to start the season. Same as Murray, I see him in at least the last eight, but probably not the last two.

Novak Djokovic – He gets points for being the defending champion, but I don’t like his chances of doing it again. The thing that stands out is that he made a last minute decision to compete in New Zeland last weekend. He hadn’t originally planned to play it, but he obviously felt he wasn’t ready for Australia yet. A guy like Djokovic needs to be at his best to get through the gauntlet here. I’d bet against.

Roger Federer – I know it isn’t an original pick, but I can’t go against Federer here. He’s ranked number two here, and that’s not going to sit well with his competitive spirit. He has won three times before here, and I expect him to be very hungry to start to wash away the bad tastes of last year. He’s 12/5 in futures bets. That’s not great, but it’s better than he has been in a long while, and a comparative bargain.

Gael Monfils – He has world class talent, he’s playing well, and he’s going to break through sooner or later. He’s at 50/1 now, and you won’t get prices like that on him too much longer. He’s my longshot darling.

Women’s Side

The Williams sisters – I will deal with them together because I discount both of their chances equally. Serena doesn’t seem to be healthy, and I don’t think she is tough enough or hungry enough to work her way through a sore knee for two weeks. Venus never seems to have her head together in Australia, so I will bet against.

Ana Ivanovic – She’s a personal favorite (for more than just her play, I’ll admit), and she was a finalist here last year, but I still have to pick against her. She hasn’t been very impressive since her French Open win, and her recent form is particularly troubling. Not worth a bet.

Jelena Jankovic – She’s the top seed, but that seems to be more by default than by merit. I’m not convinced that she is fit enough or tough enough to win this tournament.

Elena Dementieva – She had a very good prep run for this tournament, including a dismantling of Serena Williams. She’s fit, she’s confident, and her win in Beijing shows that she can handle the heat. At 7/1 she’s an excellent balance of chance and value.

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  1. I was reading a post about Australian Open betting by Baley – it is actually posted on the website from the sportsbook that I use (and although it’s questionable as far as credibility, I think it’s trustworthy) – and for the women they make a similar point as you.

    I followed their logic and bet both Williams sisters, who were paying out +250 and +375 to win the tournament, so if either of them hit, you win.

    For the men’s, I can believe in Mopy Murray. As a matter of fact – I don’t know if I can swear in this blog – but I don’t wish good things for him. He just has the face of a loser – lol. Until I see, I won’t believe it.

    I’m surprised you added Gael Monfils but didn’t make any mention of this kid Del Potro, who everyone is talking about.

    Lastly, I love my girl Ana. She is great – not necessarily for betting or tennis reasons…

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