Williams destined to win US Open now Sharapova is ruled out

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Maria Sharapova has certainly had her struggles since losing in the second round of Wimbledon to qualifier Michelle Larcher de Brito and her decision to withdraw from the upcoming US Open is only further reason to back Serena Williams to triumph at Flushing Meadows.

Williams may not be the most appealing price at 4/6 to win the US Open, but not only is she the defending champion, she has also ended up securing victory in the only two previous Grand Slams that Sharapova was forced to miss.

These absences were also due to shoulder problems with a torn rotator cuff diagnosed, allowing Williams to beat Jelena Jankovic to win the 2008 US Open and then Dinara Safina to lift the 2009 Australian Open.

This time it is a right shoulder issue and culminates what has been an eventful few months for the world number three.

After Wimbledon, Sharapova parted company with coach Thomas Hogstedt after over two years working in tandem and then was forced to miss back-to-back tournaments because of a hip injury.

The legendary Jimmy Connors then stepped in as her new coach, but this association lasted only one match and she has since been working with her father.

However, despite reportedly striking balls fairly well in her most recent US Open preparations, she is now out, which could also be good news for Sara Errani, who seems most likely to be promoted to fourth seed and so will avoid the biggest names until the semi finals, if she herself makes it that far.

Errani broke new ground when reaching the semi finals last year having never previously gone beyond the third round at Flushing Meadows and is 150/1 to win a first Grand Slam at the US Open.

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

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.