David Ferrer looks set to be the man to benefit from Rafael Nadal’s absence at the US Open, which could render his odds of 50/1 a reasonable each way shout.
Current world number five, Ferrer, has been dumped out of three Slams this year to three of tennis’ big four in Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic and Nadal himself.
But the proposed promotion to a top-four seeding spot should Nadal fail to recover from the knee injury which kept him out of the Olympics, means he will avoid the other big guns until the semi-final stage, at least, will surely boost Ferrer’s confidence.
The Spaniard’s record at Flushing Meadows is not an accurate representation of his quality – his semi-final appearance in 2007 being the only respectable finish he’s managed in New York.
However, his performances on the hard court have been much improved in the last two seasons.
37 wins from his last 48 matches on this surface, including wins over four top 10 players, suggests the world number five could be on course to turn his US Open fortunes around this August.
If Ferrer can avoid Roger Federer’s side of the draw too, then he can count his luck well and truly in.
The all-conquering Swiss star, undeniably, has the beaten French Open semi-finalist’s number – in 14 meetings between the two Ferrer is yet to taste victory, amazingly only picking up just the three sets in that time.
His likely route to the final would then see him come up against Novak Djokovic but history dictates that this is a far more appealing prospect.
He’s beaten the Serb five times in his career already – four times in straight sets plus once in the extended format of the game – and Djokovic has struggled to replicate his sparkling 2011 form this term.
At 30, Ferrer’s chances of winning a maiden Grand Slam are dwindling, yet his potential rise in the rankings to a top four seed will be his best chance of making a major final, at least.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.