Double up on Djokovic and Williams in Melbourne

Australian Open Tennis Betting – Monday 13 January 2014

A double on the Australian Open singles favourites is the best way to approach betting on the Melbourne Park event, which is the first Grand Slam tournament of the year.

Bet365 is offering odds of 1.85 about Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open men’s singles and it is trading Australian Open women’s singles market leader Serena Williams at odds of 1.73, which equates to double odds of around 3.20.

Going into 2014 and the top table of men’s singles tennis is barer than ever before. Gone are the days of the Big Four because Roger Federer is past his best – the Fed Express has delivered just one of the last 15 Grand Slam titles and he has reached only two of the last 15 Grand Slam finals – and no-one has stepped up to the mark. Also, Andy Murray is on his way back from surgery and his post-operation form does not warrant him being so short in the Australian Open betting. For now, there is a Big Two and that is it.

While one cannot understand why Djokovic has employed Boris Becker as his new coach – Boom Boom is a coaching novice and he does not come across as the most tactically astute person, so maybe it is because Nole wants to add more aggression to his game, which may not help him in the long run – one can understand why bookmakers have the Serbian at odds on.

The Australian Open men’s singles draw was kind for Djokovic, handing him what looks to be a fairly smooth passage to the final – the bottom half is definitely weaker than the top half – it was an uncomfortable experience for Nadal, who finds himself in the same eighth as Australian floaters Lleyton Hewitt, who beat Federer earlier this month, and Bernard Tomic, who he meets in round one.

Djokovic has won four of the six Australian Open men’s singles titles since the laying of the Melbourne Park hard courts, he has played in the last 14 Grand Slam semi-finals in a row and he has got the softest of soft draws. Do not overthink it: Djokovic should be shorter than odds of 1.85.

djokovic serena williams

When betting on the Australian Open tennis, it’s hard to look past the 2 favourites – Djokovic and Serena Williams

Betting on any Grand Slam women’s singles tournament comes down to backing or laying Williams because, on her day, she is not just head and shoulders about the other members of the fairer sex – she is chest and stomach above them as well. Williams is the greatest female player of all time.

Williams has not won the Australian Open women’s singles since 2010, missing the 2011 edition, crashing out in the 2012 fourth round and failing to make it past the 2013 quarter-finals. However, Williams has been the Melbourne Park queen five times – statistically, the Australian Open is her most successful event – and sometimes she has played the first major tournament of the year not 100 per cent fit.

In an ominous sign for the other 127 girls in the Australian Open women’s singles draw, Williams warmed up for Melbourne by winning the Brisbane International without dropping a set and taking the scalps of Australian Open second and third favourites Victoria Azarenka and Maria Sharapova in the Queensland final and semi-final respectively.

Azarenka is the logical danger to Williams winning her sixth Australian Open women’s singles because the number two seed has won the last two Melbourne Park events and she was the last person to defeat Williams, triumphing 2-6 6-2 7-6 in Cincinnati a fortnight before the American overcame the Belarusian 7-5 6-7 6-1 in the US Open title decider.

Some punters will try to get clever and back Azarenka each way at odds of around 6.00 – some bookmakers are betting win only to stop that tactic – but she is in the same half of the Australian Open women’s singles draw as Sharapova.

Keep it simple and back Williams to take out the Australian Open women’s singles at odds of 1.73 with Ladbrokes and Paddy Power bookmakers. Doubling up Williams with Djokovic in the men’s tournament produces a bet that represents value at odds of 3.20. Both favourites are overpriced.

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