Federer strikes to overhaul Nadal at top of Australian Open betting

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Roger Federer has taken control of favouritism for the Australian open having comfortably seen off Nikolay Davydenko in the Qatar ExxonMobil Open on Saturday.

Federer is now the 7/4 favourite to win the Australian Open, and while main rival Rafael Nadal faces a fight to be fit in time for the tournament which starts in Melbourne next Monday, Federer looks the most attractive bet for the first Grand Slam of the season.

Since losing to Tomas Berdych in the quarter-finals at Wimbledon in 2010, Federer has played in 10 hard court tournaments, has made eight finals and has lost just five of the 47 matches he played in that time.

It’s fair to say Federer is the most in-form player in the world and the money in the Australian Open betting market is behind the world number two as he chases his fifth Australian Open title.

Nadal’s illness cost him his semi-final match-up with Davydenko in Doha on Friday and it’s the concerns surrounding his fitness that has seen his Australian Open odds drift to 9/4 from 7/4.

The Spaniard spent the following two days holed up in Doha and pushed back his flight to Melbourne in order to aid his recovery.

“With my condition right now I think the more reasonable thing to do is rest a few days and have less risk of injuries, less risk of everything,” said Nadal.

The world number one should land in Melbourne today and is expected to resume training on Tuesday, and while many still see him as the man to beat, Federer’s form suggests that in reality, maybe he should be the one that occupies the world number one spot.

The 2011 Australian Open promises to be a thrilling start to the season and Federer will be eager to prove his critics wrong.

A £10 stake on Federer winning all four grand slams would return £670. New customers can sign up here for a free £10 bet.

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Robbie Morris

Robbie studied sports journalism at the University of Gloucestershire, an establishment chosen for its proximity to Cheltenham racecourse, where he was a season ticket holder. Upon graduation, Robbie was a contributor to GolfPunk, a national magazine aimed at ridding golf of its traditionalist image, before joining the news.ladbrokes team.