The Spaniard, fresh from victory at the Rogers Cup, where won his 33rd Masters 1000 title, has been coy about his chances in NY given how well his main rivals have been playing, but is counting on the atmosphere to give him a lift.
Roger Federer made the early running, winning his 20th slam crown in Australia and becoming the oldest man to be ranked world number one, but Rafael Nadal wrestled control back on clay before Novak Djokovic discovered his form again to win Wimbledon.
Wawrinka, a three-time Grand Slam champion, ousted Dimitrov in the first round at Wimbledon in July.On the women’s side, the Williams sisters feature in a talent-laden top quarter headed by world number one Simona Halep. Nadal leads the head-to-head 24-6 with Ferrer’s last victory coming in 2014.
The Spaniard clinched an 11th French Open in June to take his majors tally to 17 before falling to Djokovic in a five-set, 5-hour 15-minute semi-final loss at Wimbledon.
Will Federer end 10-year NY drought?
Hall-of-famer Rod Laver told Reuters this week that he was among his top picks to win the U.S. Open, along with Djokovic and Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro. The two-time US Open Champion has a good chance to raise the trophy in NY for the third time. Stephens became only the second unseeded woman to win the tournament in the Open era, which began in 1968.
Del Potro returned to haunt him again past year when the towering Argentine triumphed in the quarter-finals.
Zverev is also refining his approach to the frenetic atmosphere of the US Open, saying he is spending his time with a few friends and members of his team, focusing on tennis and not getting caught up in the NY “vibe”.
Andy Murray, Kyle Edmund and Cameron Norrie look to make a good start to their US Open campaigns as they all have winnable matches to kick-start the event.
Wimbledon semifinalist John Isner and others noted they would step to the line to serve and still have plenty of time – sometimes 10 seconds or more – left, enabling them to catch their breath or think about how to approach the next point.
“This just makes it a little more transparent, a little more visible”, U.S. Open tournament director David Brewer said.
Should she prevail in NY, she would equal Margaret Court’s record of 24 Grand Slam titles, although not all of Australian Court’s were claimed during the professional era.
Williams, bidding for a seventh US Open title, has said she believes she is only at the start of a “long comeback” having suffered serious health issues after giving birth to daughter Olympia last September. And then, you know, some years I just lost against a better guy.
“They all won a Slam”. Also new at the 2018 U.S. Open: electronic line-calling on every court.
2012 US Open champion Andy Murray, who only recently returned from a long injury lay-off, said on Friday he was just excited to be back on the hard court at Flushing Meadows after missing previous year. He has gone on to add two Wimbledons to his CV, but his career has been stalled by hip surgery in January which has seen his ranking slump to 378 in the world.
Williams’ 25-year-old United States compatriot Sloane Stephens, ranked third in the world, is aiming to become only the fourth woman to retain this title since 2000, after Serena and her sister Venus, plus Belgian Kim Clijsters.
The 32-year-old is not a fan of the new measure, although not due to concerns about receiving a time violation but rather because he feels it will diminish the quality of play.