US Open 2016: Futures Bets

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US Open 2016

For the next two weeks Flushing Meadows will officially become the centre of the earth as the world’s best tennis players head to the Big Apple for the final major of the season. Following the French Open all the talk was about the possibility of Novak Djokovic completing the calendar year Grand Slam. That talk quickly came to an end after an early exit at Wimbledon which was followed by an opening round defeat at the Olympics.

It has opened the door for Andy Murray and the Brit has really stepped up. He has made 7 consecutive finals – winning 5, including the Queen’s, Wimbledon and Olympic gold. One man we won’t be seeing is Roger Federer while Nadal and Del Potro continue with their returns to form. It is the most open draw at a major in close to a decade with the top 10 men in the rankings all capable of making a deep run.

The addition of the roof will also mean uninterrupted play in the later stages of the tournament and the players have applauded the change in the tournament schedule which will see the men’s semi’s played on the Friday – meaning both finalists will have a full day rest before the final. The Wold breaks down all four quarters of the men’s draw to give us his best futures bets. As always he will also have feature daily previews with all of his best bets.

Day 1 Preview & Tips

Futures Tips

Big Guns

For over 5 years ‘The Big 4’ were the only names talked about heading into the majors as Federer, Djokovic, Nadal and Murray dominated in major finals. Wawrinka was able to break through but has failed to show the consistency of his predecessors. The demise of the Big 4 was inevitable – the age of Federer has taken it’s toll and the physicality of the Nadal game has resulted in a series of injuries.

The time has now come for the other to step up. Raonic showed that he has the game to win majors at Wimbledon while time seems to have passed by for former Grand Slam finalists Tomas Berdych, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and David Ferrer.

Marin Cilic, winner here in 2014, is coming off a win in Cincinnati but the wolf says the time has come for Nishikori, Thiem, Kyrgios, Goffin and Monfils to take their games to the next level. The US Open has historically been a tournament that has produced maiden winners. Sampras, Rafter, Safin, Hewitt, Roddick, Del Potro, Murray and Cilic all won their first slam at this venue! Who will step up in 2016…

Quarter 1

As always the top seed is in the first quarter of the draw but it will be far from smooth sailing for world number one Novak Djokovic. He is in without doubt the toughest section of the draw and will have plenty of obstacles to overcome if he is to defend his US Open crown. First up he faces the ever dangerous Jerzy Janowicz – a man with one of the biggest games on the tour, albeit very inconsistent. There is a stack of big hitters in this quarter including John Isner, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Kevin Anderson – a man with a very similar game to Querrey who beat him at Wimbledon. It doesn’t stop there though with a potential quarter final against Marin Cilic who is coming off an outstanding display in Cincinnati which saw him beat Murray in straight sets in the final. The Croat looks to have found the form which saw him win here in 2014. He has the serve to take the game away from his opponent and his ground strokes are both bruising and consistent. The value here lies with Richard Gasquet. He made the quarters here last year to add to his semi final run back in 2013. Djokovic and Federer were the last two men to beat him and he has been very consistent at the majors making the 4th round in 5 consecutive slam appearances. Can’t take the shorts about Novak here and will take the two Frenchman.
Best: Richard Gasquet ($6.00)
Value: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga ($13)

Quarter 2

Two names stick out in this part of the draw clearer than a saw thumb – Raonic and Nadal but The Wolf is ready to lay both of them. Raonic has never made it past the 4th Round here and Nadal is well past his best. The Spaniard has relied on his legs to get him over the line in big matches throughout his career and there is little puff left in the raging bull. The Wolf likes the enigmatic Gael Monfils. The Frenchman is in career best form and has made multiple quarter finals here in the past. He withdrew from his quarter final clash at the Olympics against Thiem with back pain but that was more precaution than anything else. Continuing with the value them The Wolf says to also have a little something on Roberto Bautista-Agut. The Spaniard is coming off a finals appearance at the Winston Salem Open and has the game to stand the test of the majors. He has made the 4th round in 4 of his last 5 majors appearances including his last two outings at the US Open.
Best Bet: Gael Monfils ($7.00)
Value: Roberto Bautista-Agut ($13)

Quarter 3

There is a stack of talent in this section which makes it the value quarter. Close to ten men have the game to make the semi’s if they play at their best including Wawrinka, Thiem, Del Potro, Joihnson, Querrey and Zverev along with two Aussies in Kyrgios and Tomic. There is one but though, and a huge one at that, there are several questions which many of them will need to answer along the way. On his day no one can beat Wawrinka while for Kyrgios and Topmic it is a matter of being able to focus over two weeks. Del Potro has proven that he can win majors but there are still questions over his fitness. Then there are young guns Dominic Thiem and Alexander Zverev. They have bucket loads of talent but still lack the big match experience and don’t have as many wins against top 10 opponents as the others. That makes it hard for them to win the tournament but it doesn’t mean they cannot win the quarter. The Wolf cannot trust Stan and says Kyrgios will have too much fire power if he meets Tomic in the 3rd round. In the top half of this section The Wolf says it will all come down to the winner of the potential second round clash between Johnson and Del Potro. They are both in great form and it will no doubt be a night match on centre court which will favour the American. The winner of that match will make the 4th round. On price alone we have to go with Johnson. He has been super consistent in the lead up and has registered wins over several big names including Tsonga, Isner, Dimitrov, Anderson and Gasquet. Kyrgios has the game to deep in slams so we’ll make him the best with Johnson the value.
Best Bet: Nick Kyrgios ($9.00)
Value: Steve Johnson ($17)

Quarter 4

Unlike the other sections this one is as straight forward as it gets. Murray and Nishikori are the only top 10 ranked men in this section with other seeds including Karlovic, Kohlschreiber, Goffin, Dimitrov, Lopez and Simon – names who have combined for just one Grand Slam semi (Dimitrov – Wimbledon 2014). If there were rankings for form Andy Murray would be a clear number one. He was on a 22 match win streak before losing to Cilic in the finals at Cincinnati and is coming off a hard earned weeks rest. Nishikori is also running hot. He made the final in Toronto (lost to Djokovic) and won bronze in Rio. He is a runner up here in 2014 and the courts are tailor made for his game. Whether he can get it done in the latter stages is another story. Murray will be hard to beat!
Best Bet: Andy Murray ($1.33)
Value: Kei Nishikori ($7.00)

Tournament Winner

As a result of a tricky draw Djokovic has drifted to $2.20 – out from $1.80. The best bet has to be Andy Murray. He is the form player on the tour and has made the final in his last 7 tournaments. It is hard to see anyone beating Murray in the bottom half which makes it so hard to back anyone else in that part of the draw. Kyrgios has the game but cannot and will not beat Murray if they meet.

One man that could give him a fright if he can navigate his way through a tough draw is Steve Johnson. He is a huge price but is the type of player that really feeds off the crowd. He did it at collegiate level and we could see him play out of his skin in from of a rampant New York crowd. He is in career best form ans is on the verge of breaking into the top 20 for the first time.

In the top half The Wold likes Monfils to power his way through the field. If we can get Djokovic knocked out early we could see some Frenchman really work their way through the draw. Steer clear of Rafa and Raonic!
Best Bet: Murray ($2.75)
Value: Monfils ($81)
Bolters: Gasquet ($151), Steve Johnson ($201) 

Day 1 Preview & Tips

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