The Australian Open starts on January 14 and bookmakers are clamouring to offer the best tennis bets ahead of the tournament start.
The first round in both the men’s and women’s singles draws offers punters plenty of chance to profit on dead certs.
The top seeds are expected to breeze through the early rounds and that creates uneven odds which are not worth chasing on their own.
But there are plenty of Australian Open betting specials out there to keep you entertained throughout the two-week tournament!
Dominic Thiem is another star of the ATP Tour expected to make waves in 2019. He and Zverev could both claim Grand Slam titles this season — but who goes further in Melbourne?
Thiem reached the French Open final last year but his best result in Australian was a fourth-round exit in 2017 and 2018. It’s one stage further than Zverev has got over the past two years.
Yet Zverev is priced considerably lower than Thiem to win this Grand Slam. The odds defy form and Thiem is a great bet at 7/5 with Bet At Home to progress further in Melbourne than Zverev.
The heart and the mind say different things. The heart yearns for two more Serena Williams Grand Slams to make her the most successful tennis player of all time. But the mind looks at her form and casts doubt on that happening.
Williams will target an eighth Australian Open title this January. But she has played just one singles match since losing the US Open final 6-2 6-4 to Naomi Osaka last September. The veteran tennis icon is well versed to starting major tournaments with barely any competitive-match preparation.
But with the women’s game as strong as it is right now - with Osaka, Sloane Stevens, Elina Svitolina and Simona Halep all targeting the title - it’s hard to see how Williams will maintain form over two gruelling weeks. Unibet have Williams at 6/4 to crash out at the fourth round or quarter-final stage.
Roger Federer’s age, Rafael Nadal’s knees and Andy Murray’s hips mean the top of the men’s game could be overhauled in 2019.
But one powerhouse still going strong is Novak Djokovic. The Serb is the favourite with most bookmakers to win the Australian Open men’s singles title and, in reality, tennis betting fans should be looking for more than just that.
Djokovic boasts 14 Grand Slam titles and 2019 could be the year he cuts into the gap between him and Federer (20). That’s why Paddy Power have Djokovic at 7/1 to win the Australian AND French Open titles this year.
It’s a strong punt considering Djokovic is on top form and his main rivals have fallen by the wayside.
The curse of injuries can affect the best players in tennis and Simona Halep is not immune to physical set-backs. The World Number 1 won the French Open last year and reached her first Australian Open final. But a horrific back injury - in which she suffered a herniated disk - has kept her out since October.
Halep says she is back fit and ready for the Australian Open. But tennis betting fans are unlikely to take a risk on the Romanian - even at prices of 10/1 with NetBet.
This could be the year Alexander Zverev becomes a household name. The German is yet to win a Grand Slam title at the age of 21 but there are similarities with his rise and that of Roger Federer’s. Remember, the Swiss didn’t win a major title until he was 21.
Zverev’s best result at a Grand Slam to date was the quarter-finals at the French Open last year. But he also got the furthest he has done in Melbourne and Flushing Meadows. The World Number 4 reached the Hopman Cup final this year and looks comfortable on the Australian hard courts.
Zverev is 2/1 with Betfair to win a major title in 2019. Australia and New York are his best chances as Zverev excels on the hard surface. But he proved himself on clay last year and could be a good shout for the French in 2019.
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