- The 2020 US Open will get started on Monday, August 31
- No fans will be in attendance at Flushing Meadows as the players compete
- Sofia Kenin won the first major of the year (Australian Open) but Naomi Osaka is favored to win the US Open
The 2020 US Open gets underway on Monday. It’s been a long time since we’ve had a tennis grand slam, and given the long hiatus over the last several months, who knows what to expect. At any rate, let’s take a look at the four sections of the women’s draw and see who is the best bet to win each.
2020 US Open Quarter 1 Odds
Some people might be surprised to see Pliskova this high up on the board, favored to win her quarter> But she’s actually the No. 3 player in the world right now. The challenge with her is that we have no idea what her form is like these days. We’re talking about a player that has played one match since February, and she lost it to Veronika Kudermetova.
Why Pliskova is the favorite in her quarter is because of past history. She’s made it to at least the fourth round in four straight U.S. Opens and while she’s never won the event (she’s never won a grand slam), that consistency shows that she should be able to make a good run.
The other key here is that there aren’t a ton of big guns in her draw. There’s Jennifer Brady, who is next in line in terms of the odds but is ranked No. 4 in the world. Then there’s Marketa Vondrousova, who is No. 18 in the world and at +750. Angelique Kerber is actually No. 23 in the world but she’s fourth in line in terms of the odds at +850.
Brady is intriguing because she won the Top Seed Open – a tourney of mostly unranked players – but then lost in the first round at the Western & Southern Open. I’m only going with longshots in this quarter – especially after seeing Pliskova lose in the second round at Cincinnati and Vondrousova lose in the first.
2020 US Open Quarter 2 Odds
Naomi Osaka is the favorite to win this event, so it’s quite obvious that she’d be the favorite in her quarter too. On paper, she doesn’t have to cut through many big names either, looking at Anett Kontaveit, Petra Kvitova and Elena Rybakina as her main obstacles.
Kvitova was looking great early in the year, winning 12 of her first 14 matches, but who knows now. She lost her first match in Cincinnati, falling to Marie Bouzkova in three sets. As for Rybakina, she was the No. 9 seed in Cincinnati and couldn’t even get out of the first round.
Kontaveit is an interesting proposition here as she was playing really well in Cincinnati, winning her first three matches in straight sets, before running into Osaka. Osaka edged her three sets. I like that she’s played two tournaments already and looked pretty good in both since returning.
Osaka is probably the best bet from the favorites but this is women’s tennis, so it’s all a bit of a crapshoot. I’ll take a flier on Kontaveit to be the winner of this quarter.
2020 US Open Quarter 3 Odds
Williams has the shortest odds of any player to win their quarter and while I think she’s overpriced – we’re partially paying for brand name here – if there is one player that has shown she can overcome a hiatus, it’s her. She’s taken long periods of time off before and come back to play well.
Her quarter features some tricky foes as she’ll have to deal with Garbine Muguruza, Madison Keys, Amanda Anisomova, Maria Sakkari and even Sloane Stephens. Given that Williams just lost to Sakkari in Cincinnati, I’d be very careful laying the short number here.
Everyone here is a risk as Anisomova lost in the second round at Cincinnati, Keys lost was blown out in her first match and Muguruza hasn’t even played since the break. I don’t love the bet but I’d take a shot with Sakkari here given how she’s playing. She’s never been past the third round of the U.S. Open, though.
2020 US Open Quarter 4 Odds
It’s interesting to see Johanna Konta in the top 15 of the rankings. It’s been a while since she’s won a singles title (2017) but she looked good at the Western & Southern Open. She won her first three matches in straight sets – including a win over Sakkari – and lost a three-set match to Victoria Azarenka, who has looked rejuvenated.
Konta is co-favored with Sofia Kenin, who won the Australian Open earlier this year. What are we to make of the young American star, though? She started the year 15-4, winning two titles. She returned in Cincy and was cleaned out in straight sets by Alize Cornet, who is ranked No. 60.
I would actually take a shot here with Elise Mertens. She made it to the semis in Cincinnati before falling short to Osaka, and has made good runs at Flushing Meadows in the previous two years. She made it to the quarters last year and the fourth round in 2018. I think she’s got a good shot to win this quarter.