We are ploughing on through the fourth round now in your 2011 US Open tennis betting in the women’s draw. The action is coming thick and fast, and there is the prospect of some great matches ahead. Serena Williams just continues to look more and more powerful as she moves on through the tournament, taking out fourth seed Victoria Azarenka in much easier fashion than expected. But Caroline Wozniacki is still hanging around there, just hovering in the shadow of the presence of Serena Williams but still posing a very interesting threat. World Number one Caroline Wozniacki has made steady progress through the first three rounds, but there are still questions about her confidence at the moment after struggling a bit during the past few weeks. She raised her game to win New Haven before hitting Flushing Meadows, so is she going to get back to her best at the right time? The two are still on a big collision course for the semi final, in a match everyone is really anticipating and wanting to get a glimpse of. But there is work to be done before that happens, and will there be any surprises along the way. All of that is happening in the top half of the draw, while in the bottom, the draw really is wide open, with really only Vera Zvonareva and Sabine Lisicki showing the most potential for a place in the final. Flavia Pennetta put in another great performance in beating Peng Shaui in the fourth round to book her place in the quarter finals. That Italian had to fight off exhaustion and being 6-1 down in the second set tie break to bounce back and take a two set victory. That was one of the best matches we have seen so far, and she will be confident in the bottom half of the draw. The draw really is beginning to look a little thinned out in the bottom half with Wimbledon Champion Petra Kvitova bombing out in the first round, and then one of the favourites Maria Sharapova being ousted in the second round after a stirring performance from Flavia Pennetta. With no Kim Clijsters back to defend her title, who will get their name on the US Open roll of honour this year? The stakes are still high. Here is a look at the front runners left in 2011 US Open tennis betting at the third round stage of the WTA draw.
Serena Williams: 8/15 at Paddy Power
Value: With the fall of Sharapova, Williams is even more of a favourite now. Rightly so, she is just like a steam train at the moment, and opponents don’t know how to handle her. Really hard to bet against Serena Williams after taking out Victoria Azarenka. Forget all that seeding stuff, she is justifiably the outright favourite at Flushing Meadows now. We thought Azarenka would prove to be a tough test and it just didn’t happen. Really only Wozniacki looks as if she is going to stand in her way now.
1st Round: v Bojana Jovanovski. Serena saw off the young Serbian without batting an eyelid. Total mismatch in class (although Jovanovski is such a promising youngster).
2nd Round: v Michaella Krajicek. After seeing her sister Venus depart because of illness, any questions over the health of Serena were well and truly crushed after she dropped just one game against the Dutch player.
3rd Round: v Victoria Azarenka – Wow, would be a great word to describe this effort from Williams. Azarenka has been in great form over the past few months, and rapidly maturing into a top player. However, Williams just came in, broke the Belarusian on her first service game and took the first set 6-1. Azarenka did scrap her way back to a tie break in the second, but Williams still closed it out. It was just the sheer power and placement of shots in the first set to overwhelm the fourth seed which was remarkable.
4th Round: v Ana Ivanovic
Caroline Wozniacki: 8/1 at Boylesports
Value: Still think that she is worth a bet in 2011 US Open tennis betting, even though she could run into Serena Williams in the semi finals. Because of Wozniacki’s poor form in the Grand Slams, she is better value than she should be, so worth a flutter. Watching Wozniacki there is still the sense that there ise something more, something bigger and better to come from here. We know what her game is all about, consistency and great defence. You just want to see her explode with a bit more passion and really, really take the game to an opponent. Has drifted in outright odds after that Serena Williams performance.
1st Round: v Nuria Llagostera Vives. Comfortably win for Wozniacki, who comes really look for some continuity in her form.
2nd Round: v Arantxa Rus. Some may remember Rus who sprang a surprise on Kim Clijsters this year at Wimbledon. Anyway, no such problems for Wozniacki who suddenly looks fired up.
3rd Round: v Vania King. Not really too much of a test for Wozniacki who moved through in straight sets. Had a slip up on service right at the start of the match, but the sheer class of the young Danish world number one shone through. There will be tougher tests? Is she ready? Does she have another gear?
4th Round v: Svetlana Kuznetsova
Sabine Lisicki: 9/1 at Paddy Power
Value: The German has won so many people over this year, she has been that fantastic. Lifted a WTA Tour title in the build up to Flushing Meadows, and with the draw wide open in the bottom half of the draw, she has a fantastic chance of making the semi’s at least. Fire, spontaneity and huge passion. Great outside shot with superb power in her serves. Will be fresh as well, as she didn’t play in the second round.
1st Round: v Alona Bondarenko. Lisicki continues her very good form for the year. No problems.
2nd Round: v Venus Williams. Lisicki got a walkover when Williams pulled out of the tournament. Good extra couple of days rest for her!
3rd Round: v Irina Falconi. Progress as expected from the German, who now really starts her tournament against second seed Vera Zvonareva. Winner of this should really go on and win the bottom half of the draw. Our money would be on Lisicki.
4th Round: v Vera Zvonareva
Vera Zvonareva: 14/1 at William Hill
Value: Well, the thing about Zvonareva is that she is nowhere near her very best. She is not the player she was twelve months ago and the bookies recognise that. However, she is in the easier side of the draw, but will run into Lisicki in the third round. That may be a match too far for her, because Zvonareva is battling more than she should be to win games at the moment. Be a major surprise if she goes all the way at Flushing Meadows.
1st Round: v Stephanie Foretz Gacon. Fairly easy passage for Zvonareva, and needs to take confidence from it.
2nd Round: v Kateryna Bondarenko. Well Zvonareva had to work ever so hard for this victory, harder than a number two seed should have too. Just struggling too much to get on top of her game. Can see her struggling against a fresh Lisicki.
3rd Round: v Anabel Medina Garrigues. A tight match, but Zvonareva hung in there and took her chances. Not sure where the extra gear is at the moment from the Russian, but the first big seed into the fourth round, nonetheless.
4th Round: v Sabine Lisicki
Sam Stosur: 16/1 at BetFred
Value: The Aussie continues to fly under the radar, and the ninth seed is usually hit and miss. Has not been a great year for her, she is better than the results she has delivered in the Slams this year. However, wide open draw in the bottom half again, could serve her well. Very dogged and digs deep. Not enough punch or flair to win outright you feel though.
1st Round: v Sofia Arvidsson. Always look at Stosur as a potential early seed casualty. No problems here though.
2nd Round: v Coco Vandeweghe. Solid enough from the Aussie, winning the match she was expected to. Should be more to come from her though if she has Grand Slam dreams here.
3rd Round: v Nadia Petrova
Svetlana Kuznetsova: 40/1 at Victor Chandler
Value: An interesting outsider and mentioning her because she could cause an upset to Wozniacki in the fourth round if they meet. Kuznetsova is a past US Open champion and showed her class in beating Britain’s Elena Baltacha in the second round. In the tough part of the draw though, so that is why her odds are long.
1st Round: v Sara Errani. Nice steady warm up match from Kuznetsova.
2nd Round: v Elena Baltacha. Bally broke out to an early 3-0 lead in the first set, but then Kuznetsova switched on, stepped up a gear and suffocated the court for the Brit. Looked pretty sharp.
3rd Round: v Akqul Amanmuradova. Easy progress in straight sets. Continuing her good, confident form.
4th Round: v Caroline Wozniacki