Gael Monfils has sauntered through his tennis career without a thought to what happens tomorrow, always living in the now, accompanying defeats in major tournaments with a gallic shrug.
Except the one word you could use to describe Monfils over the past 10 days is consistent, and his performances when dispatching of good players in Richard Gasquet and Igor Andreev with relative ease, have suggested that Monfils outlook has changed.
Monfils has been with coach Roger Rasheed since 2008, the longest partnership he’s had with any authoritarian figure which could explain his new approach to tennis.
Novak Djokovic awaits Monfils in the quarter-finals and this will be the first real test for the new the Frenchman, up against a man who is in very impressive form as he looks to shrug off his inconsistent tag – he’s 11/4 to win today.
Monfils has the ability to challenge Djokovic but if the Serb starts strongly, previous tournaments would suggest it could be over quickly.
The Frenchman will be out to prove his new found professionalism but an easy straight sets loss, Djokovic is 6/5 to do so, would prove Monfils doesn’t have the mental state to challenge for a major tournament.
Djokovic, 1/4 to win, is unbeaten in four attempts against Monfils, but three of those matches have gone the distance and Djokovic is 11/2 to win in five sets, Monfils is 8/1 to do the same.
Despite a wobble in the first round, the Serb has been in seriously impressive form at the championships and should progress, but the difficulty of the challenge lies in his opponent’s mentality.
The winner will play either Federer or Soderling in the semi-final and that match is also on today. See the full US Open tennis betting market here.