Roger Federer’s unexpected decision to join Australian Open champion Stanislas Wawrinka for their first round Davis Cup tie against last year’s finalists Serbia has sent a tidal wave through the betting market.
As mentioned in our outright preview the Davis Cup is notoriously hard to predict mainly because it’s impossible to know who will be playing until they actually emerge on to court.
The fun and games have started early this year with Switzerland, priced at 5/1 before the news, now 5/2 favourites to win outright, as they can now boast two Grand Slam winners as their singles player, and if necessary, as their doubles team.
On the other hand, Serbia, winners in 2010 and runners-up last year have seen their price double from 9/2 to 9/1 as not only news of their opponents team enhancements broke but also the revelation that Novak Djokovic will not be playing.
This has left Serbia with no chance whatsoever with their highest ranked player now 102 in the world.
The 9/1 now available would be much longer if the rules didn’t allow for late changes but with pictures taken recently of the world number two on a skiing holiday it seems unlikely that he will have a change of heart, especially as they would still start the match as underdogs.
Spain, who were 3/1 favourites, are now 4/1 alongside France who have already been advised as the best bet.
While Spain have neither Rafael Nadal nor David Ferrer, France are fully loaded with top 10 players Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Richard Gasquet along with Gael Monfils available if required.
Champions of the last two years, Czech Republic remain popular at 6/1 with stalwarts Tomas Berdych and Radek Stepanek expected to fly the flag once more.
Great Britain face the most successful team in the competition’s history in the form of Jim Courier’s USA and although they are not the force of old when Andre Aggasi and Pete Sampras were playing they should be too strong for GB even with Andy Murray at their disposal.
While Murray will be favourite to win both of his singles rubbers it’s unlikely that world number 175 James Ward will trouble either John Isner and Sam Querrey and so the tie will be decided by the Saturday doubles where the Americans have the 15-time Grand Slam champions Mike and Bob Bryan.
Although they will miss Milos Raonic massively in their first round tie against Japan they still have a great chance of progressing with Vasek Popsipil and a strong double pairing and with their star man back for the quarter-finals they can cause problems for any team.
Davis Cup betting:
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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