Favorite Serena Williams has pulled out of the U.S. Open and offshore betting odds makers are scrambling to decide upon a favorite. Bookmaker odds will probably favor Kim Clijsters since she is the defending champion.
She is not going to be 8-5 though as Serena was. It is more likely that she will be about 3-1 with Maria Sharapova the second choice.
Williams Injured: Serena had to pull out because she is still recovering from surgery on her right foot. She is the top-ranked women’s player in the world and has won three U.S. Open titles. Last year she lost in the semifinals and she really wanted to play this year.
She said that missing the U.S. Open will be one of the “most devastating moments” of her career. Serena was hurt last month by broken glass at a restaurant and she had to have surgery. It is very unusual for Williams to miss a grand slam event as she had played in the last 16 straight.
Last year Williams lost to Clijsters in the semifinal and she wanted revenge this year. She is going to have to wait.
Now What: What do you do now with the U.S. Open at Sbg global.com with Serena out? The obvious choice to win now is Clijsters. She won last year and she is playing well. Her main competition would probably be Sharapova but she has already proven she can beat her as she won at Cincinnati vs. Sharapova a couple of weeks ago.
If Not Clijsters then who? If you don’t want to bet on Clijsters then who do you take? Sharapova’s odds are probably too low to make her a good choice. Two years ago Jelena Jankovic made the finals but is she tough enough to win at New York? Caroline Wozniacki is way overdue to make a big splash so perhaps now is her time.
Venus Williams hasn’t won a major other than Wimbledon since 2001 so we have to look elsewhere with her. If Vera Zvonareva can keep her emotions in check she has some value at offshore betting odds of 20-1.
The best option if not Clijsters is probably Victoria Azarenka. She beat Sharapova for the Stanford title and could win her first slam in New York.