Murray on drift in Australian Open odds after difficult draw

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Andy Murray has lengthened from 9/2 to 11/2 to claim a maiden Grand Slam at the Australian Open after gaining no favours in the draw.

Murray should have little trouble progressing through the opening two rounds in Melbourne, but from the fourth round onwards, he could have difficulty.

If no major upsets occur in the opening rounds, Murray’s passage from the fourth round to the final looks far tougher than the draws of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.

Murray would effectively have to defeat Gael Monfils, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Djokovic in succession just to reach a third successive Australian Open final.

Roger Federer will also feel that his progression through the draw could have been slightly easier.

Juan Martin del Potro would have been the one player from further down the seeds that all of the big guns would have wanted to avoid and he is a potential quarter-final opponent for Federer.

The Swiss maestro would then have to beat long-time rival Nadal to reach the final and Federer is 10/3 to win the Australian Open.

World number one Djokovic has been cut marginally from 11/8 to 5/4 to continue where he left off in 2011 with another Grand Slam success after a relatively kind draw.

His first big test would potentially not be until a probable quarter-final meeting with David Ferrer, who he recently battered 6-2, 6-1 to win an ATP title in the UAE.

Nadal joins Murray on 11/2 and he would have to beat the likes of John Isner and Tomas Berdych to reach the semi finals.

In terms of the early first-round action, Djokovic is an unbackable 1/750 to beat Paolo Lorenzi, while Murray may make a few accumulators as he is 1/20 to defeat teenage American Ryan Harrison.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.