US Open – starts 31 August

So what’s special about the US Open? Well, its one of the 4 majors along with Wimbledon, The French Open and The Australian Open. The mens matches are player over 5 sets rather than 3 ( the womens are still best of 3 )

Every player enters the Majors which is why the tournament lasts 2 weeks rather than the usual 1.

Does it make any difference to traders if the matches are best of 5? Wierdly, when a player breaks srve in the first set you get virtually the same price movement as you would in a bet of 3 match. This is a classic market over reaction as potentially you still have 4 sets to go! If a player goes 2 sets up then their price will drop like a stone as it is a long way back for their opponent.

We usually see fewer surprise results as the longer matches gives the quality players time to recover from early lack of concentration.

One thing to watch when picking matches to trade in the first week is that because there are many more games than normal the money in the markets is spread thinner. Don’t get caught out trading a low liquidity match as it can be very difficult to get out of a trade that goes wrong.

The mens draw is split into 4 sections with one of the top 4 seeds in each section.

Section 1:

Players to watch:

Federer

Hewitt

Soderling

Davydenko

Federer, obviously, should make it to the the Quarter final stage without too much trouble but Hewitt could give him a little trouble if they meet.

Soderling is probably the best bet we have for an “outsider” to win the tournament. If he can recreate the form that  he showed in the French Open. He hits the ball incredibly hard on serves and ground strokes alike but as he hits the ball very flat rather than using topspin to pull the ball down inside the lines he is playing with a little less margin for error.

Soderling or Davydenko to join Fed in the Quarters.

Section 2:

Players to watch:

Djokovic

Verdasco

Hanescu

Roddick

Djokovic has one of the easiest routes to the QF’s with Andreev maybe his only worry. Verdasco has won this weeks tournament and looked very impressive.

Hanescu’s serve is working wella dn he has put in some pretty solid performances recently.

Roddick has to fancy his chances in his own country and the home crowd will be trying to lift their boy. He will have to perform very well to come through some potentially sticky matches.

Djokovic and Roddick/Verdasco for the QF’s

Section 3:

Players to watch:

Tsonga

Ferrer

Nadal

Probably the most even section. Tsonga has been good is short bursts. Hopefully he can get motivated and keep motivated for this tournament because when he is on form he is one of the most entertaining players to watch.

Nadal would have to be favourite to reach the QF’s. I think the US Open has maybe come a little early in his recovery from the knee injurybut its difficult to see who will challenge him except perhaps Ferrer.

Section 4:

Players to watch:

Del Potro

Karlovic

Wawrinka

Murray

Del Potro, if on form, will stroll into the QF’s. Murray needs to come into the tournament with an aggressive approach. If he does then he has a great chance of taking the title but he needs to avoid trying to play safe.

Both Karlovic and Wawrinka can cause him problems if he is below his best.

As Murray was runner up last year if he doesn’t reach the final this time he will be losing ranking points. If he has a nightmare and goes out early and Nadal has a good 2 weeks he will be looking over his shoulder as Nadal will be wanting his world 2 ranking back.

Tip for the tournament? IF Murray comes in with the attitude in the early rounds that he has to take care of business and despatches his opponent clinically then he is my tip for the title. If his head isn’t right its hard to see Fed losing it. Best outsider could be Soderling.

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