The second round of the US Open continues in New York on Friday, with Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal and John Isner all in action for the men, whilst Maria Sharapova looks to continue her run in the women’s draw.
Rafael Nadal v Nicolas Mahut
Rafael Nadal made hard work of his first round
opponent, Golubev on Tuesday evening but he’ll be expecting a quick demolition
of Nicolas Mahut when they meet in the final match of the Day Session on Arthur
Ashe as he remains one of the favorites on the Men's side of the US Open,
Nicolas Mahut probably has a slightly
higher profile in the game than he has earned, on account of his 70-68 final
set defeat to John Isner in 2010, and whilst there has always been the
potential to take a step up the rankings and make some waves with the top guys,
Mahut has never really fulfilled that potential.
At 29, and currently ranked 99
in the world, Mahut’s career seems to be heading in the wrong direction. The
Frenchman showed some good spirit to come back from two sets down to Robert
Farah in the first round, but he won’t have the energy to stay the pace with
Rafa and I expect this one to be over very very quickly, and therefore a no brainer when it comes to tennis betting.
Rafael Nadal to win 3-0 – 2/5 – Paddy Power
First set score – 6-2 (Nadal) – 4/1 –
John Isner v Robby Ginepri
Following a successful summer in the
States, John Isner will be looking for a minimum of a place in the second week
here in New York.
He was handed a tough opener against Baghdatis, which he came through
comfortably in four sets, and the American shouldn’t have too much trouble with
28-year-old compatriot, Robby Ginepri. Having said that, so much was expected
of Ginepri, following a standout year in 2005, in which he reached the
semi-finals of this very event.
If he can somehow recreate that form on
Friday afternoon then who knows? The pair have met on two previous occasions
(2009) and have shared a match apiece, but since that time their careers have
moved in opposite directions and there are now more than 300 ranking places
between the two.
If he rolls back the years then maybe
Ginepri could take an early set, but he’s going have to work so hard on his own
serve just to stay with Isner, I’d expect even some early resilience to break
John Isner to win 3-1 – 5/2 – Victor Chandler
Total Isner games – Over 19.5 – Evens –
Andy Murray v Robin Haase
Andy Murray came through a tough opening
set against Somdev Devvarman in the first round before going on to take
comfortable control of the match, and in Robin Haase he has an opponent of a
similar standard, who may well cause some early problems but will ultimately be
dispatched without a great deal of problem by the 24-year-old World No.4.
Currently ranked at a career high No.41,
Dutchman Haase came through his opening match in straight sets and will
certainly be relishing this opportunity. At just 24 himself, Haase still has
the chance to build on his current ranking, but I don’t expect him to manage a
set against Murray.
Interestingly, the pair have met just once
previously, with Haase triumphing in straight sets back in 2008. However, there
is a world of difference between Rotterdam
and Flushing Meadow and Andy Murray should be evening up the head-to-head score
on Friday afternoon.
Andy Murray to win 3-0 – 3/5 – Victor Chandler
games – under 19/.5 – 4/7 Paddy Power
Maria Sharapova v Flavia Pennetta
Iff to the women's side of things. After tipping Sharapova to win the opening
set of her last match 6-1, the 24-year-old Russian duly obliged and brought
home a nice 4/1 win on Wednesday.
Sharapova’s Round 3 opponent, Flavia Pennetta
is an altogether different prospect and for me, there’s a chance we could be
seeing our first really big odds upset of the tournament on Friday.
Currently ranked at World No.25, Pennetta
coasted through her last match in straight sets and looks in the mood to cause
an upset. She reached the quarter finals here in 2008 and 2009 and has beaten
Sharapova before. Sharapova leads the head-to-head, 2-1 but it was Pennetta who
won their most recent encounter in LA (2009).
If things go against Sharpova early on, her
confidence could take a knock and that’s often when the serve goes missing. I’m
going to stick my neck out and predict a straight sets victory for Pennetta in
Flavia Pennetta to win 2-0 – 7/1 – William