US Open Day 1: Women’s draw set for early American casualty

The final tennis Grand Slam of the year arrives in New York with Ladbrokes making Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams the two most likely winners of the men’s and women’s events.

Will there be an upset to make the back pages on the opening day? Or will the top seeds cruise through as expected?

Either way there’s money to be made and the bookmaker’s news team offer these three bets as their best for the curtain raising action:

Tommy Haas to beat Fernando Verdasco @ 11/4

The German veteran enjoys a 3-1 head to head record against Verdasco, which isn’t even skewed from their early meetings when Haas was playing more in his prime.

The 37-year-old beat the Spaniard twice in three meetings between 2006 and 2009, all on hard courts, but showed there was life in the old dog yet when toppling the current world number 42 in Rotterdam last year.

Coco Vandeweghe to beat Sloane Stephens @ 5/2

Vandeweghe displayed her burgeoning talent on the biggest stage at Wimbledon, reaching the quarter finals and beating Samantha Stosur and Lucie Safarova on the way.

At the same tournament, Stephens crashed out to Safarova in the third round and has struggled generally in her home Slam, never getting beyond the fourth.

Vandeweghe has beaten the American twice in their three career meetings too, winning both times they have met on the hard courts.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to beat Jarkko Nieminen 3-0 @ 8/15

The Frenchman enjoyed something of a return to big-stage form at this year’s French Open, reaching the semi-finals, and should be able to get his US Open campaign off to a fine start too.

Tsonga has defeated the Finnish world number 101 in straight sets in both of their last two meetings and has triumphed in four of the last five tussles overall.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.