Although Kim Clijsters may be widely expected to win a second successive US Open title, she is unlikely to have it all her own way against the rapidly-improving Vera Zvonareva.
The 26-year-old Russian has made great strides this year by following up on reaching the final at Wimbledon in July by surging to another final at Flushing Meadows.
And she will be desperate to avenge her loss to Serena Williams at Wimbledon by landing her maiden Grand Slam with victory over another of the game’s greats in Clijsters.
Zvonareva is 2/1 to win the US Open despite having beaten Clijsters in their previous two meetings, including en route to the final at Wimbledon.
Meanwhile, she has not dropped a set at the US Open this year and is 4/1 to maintain this record in the final.
As Zvonareva was seeing off top seed Caroline Wozniacki in the semi-finals, Clijsters recovered from a set down to progress in a hard-fought contest with the last remaining home player left in the tournament Venus Williams.
Clijsters’ winning streak now stands at 20 matches on the hard courts of Flushing Meadows and she has won the tournament on her last two appearances in 2005 and last year.
She is 4/11 to do so again this year, but will have to find a way of combating Zvonareva’s fitness, speed and exceptional lateral movement.
The Belgian said: “She’s a player who doesn’t give you much, she always hangs in there. It’s not that she has a game that’s very unpredictable but what she does she does extremely well.”
Clijsters is 9/2 to repeat her semi final performance of losing the first set before bouncing back to triumph. See the whole US Open women’s final match betting market.