Venus vs. Serena Williams highlights Fourth Round Wimbledon Action

serena-venus-williams-wimbledonThe fourth round of the 2015 Wimbledon tournament features a very prominent matchup on the women’s side, with top-ranked Serena Williams taking on her sister, No. 16 seed Venus Williams. This marks the 26th time that the two sisters from Compton, California have met, with Serena leading the series 14-11.

It’s largely expected that Serena will once again get the better of her slightly older sibling. After all, Serena is the world’s top female player and is searching for her fourth-straight Grand Slam title. However, as the series indicates, things are never far apart in terms of competition when these two face off. So expect a very good match when Serena and Venus play later today at 8:05am EST.

Assuming top seeds keep winning on the women’s side, Serena would end up facing No. 4 Maria Sharapova. The Russian is hunting for her sixth-career Grand Slam title and second Wimbledon victory (she won in 2004).

The other side of the ladies’ bracket is quite wide open, given that No. 2 Petra Kvitova, the defending champion, and No. 3 Simona Halep both lost in earlier rounds. Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki is the highest seed left on this side, at No. 5, so anything could happen within the coming days.

Switching to the men, the top four seeds are all alive, with No. 1 Novak Djokovic, No. 2 Roger Federer, No. 3 Andy Murray and No. 4 No. 4 Stan Wawrinka all battling for the title. Federer is seeking a record eighth Wimbledon victory, while Murray, beloved by British fans, is trying to win his second Wimbledon title in three years. But if things keep going like they are, Djokovic has a very good opportunity to defend his victory from last year.

Following the fourth round, Wimbledon reaches its quarterfinals stage, where the prospective finals matches will be much more apparent.

2015 Wimbledon Betting: How will Key Players do?

novak-djokovic2015 Wimbledon begins tomorrow and there are definitely some interesting matches on the schedule. Moreover, there are certainly a couple of big favorites as we head into this week. On the men’s side, top-ranked Novak Djokovic is favored by many to win the legendary grass court title this year. He is the defending Wimbledon champion and also won this title in 2011 too.

On the women’s side, Serena Williams is easily favored since she’s won both the Australian and French Open this year, and is looking for another Grand Slam title. It serena-williams-cincinnati-opendoesn’t hurt that she’s won Wimbledon five times in her career, most recently in 2012. Of course, there’s more to 2015 Wimbledon betting than just Williams and Djokovic, so let’s discuss how some key players look to do in the upcoming days.

Men’s Side

Kukushkin (Kaz) v Murray (3) (GB) – If there’s a second favorite to win, it’s definitely Andy Murray. The Brit not only won Wimbledon in 2013, but he also has the home-court advantage once again. Murray’s first-round opponent, Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin, shouldn’t give him much trouble. But if he continues progressing through the tournament, he’ll have a tough draw that could include Rafael Nadal in the quarterfinals and Roger Federer in the semi-finals.

Dzumhur (Bih) v Federer (2) (Sui) – With seven Wimbledon titles to his name, it’s little wonder why Federer ranks among the men’s favorites to win. Federer also believes that the extra week that was added in between the French Open and now has helped him to get the “best preparation I’ve ever had for Wimbledon.” He plays 23-year-old Damir Dzumhur in the first round, in what should be a learning experience for the Bosnian.

rafael-nadal-wrist-injuryBellucci (Brz) v Nadal (10) (Spa) – Nadal definitely hasn’t played his best tennis in recent months, and it’s caused him to tumble down to 10th in the ATP rankings. But it was just two weeks ago that he won his first tournament (Mercedes Cup) of the year on grass. He opens the 2015 Wimbledon against Brazil’s Thomaz Bellucci, who is 17-15 in singles matches this year.

Women’s Side

Bertens (Ned) v Kvitova (2) (Cze) – Petra Kvitova may not be favored ahead of Williams, but she has just as good a shot at winning. The Czech is the defending Wimbledon champion and has two tournament titles to her credit this year. Kvitova will face Dutch player Kiki Bertens, who’s gone 15-14 in singles matches so far.

Sharapova (4) (Rus) v Konta (GB) – Maria Sharapova has played quite well this year, racking up a 29-6 record and two tourney titles, with the most recent coming last month caroline-wozniackiin Rome. However, her first-round opponent, Britain’s Johanna Konta, is certainly not to be overlooked since she recently reached the quarterfinals of Eastbourne (GB). This should be one of the better opening-round matches.

Wozniacki (5) (Den) v Zheng (Chn) – Caroline Wozniacki has had some abrupt exits in recent months, including a first-round loss to Victoria Azarenka at Internazionali BNL d’Italia. Nevertheless, she shouldn’t have too much difficulty handling China’s Zheng Jie, who’s been injured much of this year.

2014 US Open Betting: Federer wins, Semifinals now set

roger-federer-gael-monfils-us-openGael Monfils was definitely pumped about his 2014 US Open quarterfinals matchup with Roger Federer. The Frenchman told reporters that he looked forward to one day being able to tell his kids that he played against the 17-time major champion. And Monfils nearly got the chance to tell his unborn children that he beat Federer.

The 20th seed won the first two sets against Federer, who carries the tournament’s second seed. However, the Swiss star showed plenty of poise in coming back to grab a 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 7-5, 6-2 victory.

Monfils had won every set in the 2014 US Open leading up to the quarterfinals match. And this continued until his third set against Federer, with the latter winning this one and jumping out to an early lead in the fourth set. But Monfils made this a contest by winning a couple of games with plenty of hustle, athleticism and a 137-mph serve. The two played back and forth from here, with Federer finally prevailing. The fifth set was pretty anti-climatic as he easily won the tail-end of the match.

Federer will now face No. 14 Marin Cilic in the semifinals. Cilic upended No. 6 Tomas Berdych in a hard-fought victory that will see him in his first semfinal appearance since the 2010 Australian Open.

Djokovic beats Murray to make 8th Straight Semifinal

novak-djokovic-us-openIn a matchup of former US Open champions, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray put on a good show for the crowd. The two caught would-be winners, had prolonged volleys and made plenty of highlight-reel plays in their match. Ultimately, it was Djokovic prevailing in this one after winning 7-6 (1), 6-7 (1), 6-2, 6-4 to reach his 8th consecutive US Open semifinal.

This could be Djokovic’s toughest route to the semfinals in the last eight years, given that he and Murray played for 3 hours and 32 minutes. “I knew coming into tonight’s match that it’s going to be tough, that he’s going to go for his shots, and the more aggressive one would win it,” the No. 1 seed said. “I’m glad I managed to stay fit in the end and pull it through.”

Djokovic will now move on to face No. 10 Kei Nishikori. The Japanese player beat third-seeded Stan Wawrinka 3-6, 7-5, 7-6 (7), 6-7 (5), 6-4. Nishikori becomes the first player from Japan to reach the US Open semifinals since 1918.

2014 US Open Semifinals Betting (Found at GTBets.eu)

Novak Djokovic (-950)
Kei Nishikori (650)

Marin Cilic (260)
Roger Federer (-360)

Williams, Federer win Cincinnati Open Titles

serena-williams-cincinnati-openIf you’re looking for a female favorite as 2014 US Open betting approaches, you might want to consider Serena Williams. The 32-year-old won her first title at the Cincinnati Open in six tries by defeating Ana Ivanovic 6-4, 6-1. “I just love this moment,” she said afterward. “I just love holding up the trophy.”

With her latest tournament victory, Williams is already looking ahead to the US Open. “This is definitely a level that can take me to the (U.S. Open) title.” She added, “I still have a lot of work to do. It’s definitely a better level than I’ve played all year, to be honest.”

Besides Williams playing her strongest of the summer, other circumstances certainly fell in her favor as well. Top-seeded Victoria Azarenka had to withdraw from the Cincinnati event due to injury. And Ivanovic needed to be treated for a stomach ailment during her three-hour victory over Maria Sharapova. After this grueling semifinals match, Ivanovic didn’t seem to have much left in the tank when she faced Williams.

The latter took full advantage of the situation after pounding out excellent serves on her way to 12 aces. Ivanovic was surprised that this number wasn’t higher as she said, “Only? It felt like way more. I felt like she was dominating” If Ivanovic feels this way, it’s because Williams has definitely been dominating against her. Serena boasts a 7-1 career record against the Serbian.

serena-williams-cincinnati-open-1However, Williams’ path towards the Cincinnati victory wasn’t a cakewalk. She suffered from a stiff back during her semifinal win and was sore to start the finals match as well. Williams was behind early, but evened up the match at 3-3. When Ivanovic double-faulted twice in a row, Williams took control of the match and never looked back.

But will her back pain persist in the 2014 US Open? Williams noticeably winced on a couple of serves and had to stretch her back in between sets a lot. However, the thrill of being in the final took her mind off the pain. ”I felt it a little bit in the second, but I just was so excited for this final and to be in the final,” she said. ”I just really felt like I had nothing to lose. So I was able to relax.”

Williams now figures to jump back into the top 10 of the WTA rankings, while Ivanovic is almost assured of staying in the top 10 after a runner-up finish.

Federer wins Cincinnati again

When the Cincinnati Open rolls around next year, you might want to go all in on Roger Federer. He improved his record in the Cincinnati Open finals to 6-0 after prevailing over David Ferrer 6-1, 1-6, 6-2. Interestingly enough, Federer also improved his perfect career mark against Ferrer to 16-0.

When asked about the secret behind his domination in the Queen City, Federer simply offered, “I don’t know – I just really enjoy myself here.”

roger-federer-cincinnati-oepnLike Williams on the women’s side, Federer benefited from the defending champ Rafael Nadal pulling out with an injury. Also, top-seeded Novak Djokovic bit the dust early after losing his second match of the tourney.

Of course, this isn’t to take anything away from Federer, who played excellent throughout the event. His finals opponent admitted as much. ”The third set, he served unbelievable,” Ferrer said. “He played really good and I was a little bit tired. But anyway, with Roger it’s difficult, no?”

This victory was extra sweet for the Swiss star because he’d previously lost his last four Masters final matches. In fact, he took second to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga last week in Toronto. Now, with a sixth Cincinnati Open victory, Federer is heading into the 2014 US Open with some steam. ”I’m really pleased with the week,” Federer said. “Overall, it went from good to great. ‘My game’s exactly where I want it to be.”

Rafael Nadal’s Wrist Injury leaves him Questionable for US Open

rafael-nadal-wrist-injurySpanish tennis star Rafael Nadal recently withdrew from tournaments in Cincinnati and Toronto because of a right wrist injury. This is big news for anybody who’s eyeing 2014 US Open betting because Nadal would likely be a favorite, given that he’ll be defending his title. The US Open begins on August 25th, so the 28-year-old still has three weeks to get back to full strength.

The right wrist injury doesn’t affect Nadal’s entire game because he plays left-handed. However, he also uses a two-handed backhand and isn’t himself right now. “Unfortunately I injured myself yesterday during practice and after checking with my doctors I will have to stay out of competition for at least two to three weeks,” Nadal said after pulling out of the Cincinnati and Toronto events. There is some optimism, though, because he posted on Facebook that he expects to “be well for the US Open.”

Nadal’s manager, Benito Perez-Barbadillo, shed some more light on the matter by writing that Rafa was hurt during a practice session on his home island of Mallorca (Spain). Perez-Barbadillo added that doctors want Nadal to wear a cast on his wrist for the next 2-3 weeks while it heals. Along the way, doctors will be monitoring the right wrist, including an MRI, to determine when he can play again.

rafael-nadal-wrist-injury-1The Toronto tournament starts tomorrow and the Cincinnati event begins on Aug. 11th. Nadal won both of these events in 2013 (the Canadian tourney was held in Montreal last year) during his US Open hard-court preparation. Rafa would go on to win the 2013 US Open as well, which is part of his 14 Grand Slam titles. This is tied with Pete Sampras for second in men’s tennis history, and just three off of Roger Federer’s all-time record of 17 Grand Slam victories.

Unfortunately, even if he’s ready by the 2014 US Open, Nadal will be a little rusty due to inactivity. On the other hand, he has been his usual dominant self this year, recording a 44-8 record and winning four titles, including his record ninth French Open win. The wrist injury has kept him from having an even better year because he hasn’t played since losing to 19-year-old Nick Kyrgios on July 1st at Wimbledon. At this time, Nadal is ranked second in the ATP Men’s rankings with 12,670 points. This puts him just behind Novak Djokovic (13,130 points) for the number one ranking.

Raonic, Pospisil to meet at Citi Open in First All-Canadian Final

pospisil-vs-raonicRegardless of how they perform in the Citi Open 2014 Final later today, Vasek Pospisil and Milos Raonic have already entered the tennis history books. The two young players will compete in the first all-Canadian ATP World Tour final. Additionally, they’re only the second duo that was born in the 90s to face each other in an ATP final. They just missed out on another first here because, one day ago, David Goffin (23) and Dominic Thiem (20) battled in the Kitzbuehel final.

Second-seeded Raonic has been truly dominant at the Citi Open thus far, having not yet dropped a set in Washington D.C. His dominance could especially be seen against semifinals opponent Donald Young, as the Canadian hit 15 aces and won 91 percent of his service points in a 6-4, 7-5 victory. He now has a chance to win his sixth-career ATP title.

“It was good,” said Raonic. “I did the most important things. I took care of my serve. I thought he played really well and I just put that pressure on him in the final games of the set. It paid off. Obviously I want more. I think I have a much better understanding of what I need to bring out of myself, especially earlier in tournaments so I can do consistently well at each tournament and give myself the opportunity to get into the weekend stages.”

Ranked no. 7 in the world and boasting a strong 28-10 match record this year, Raonic is definitely the favorite heading into the historic all-Canadian final.

Pospisil, the 13th seed, had a more difficult path towards the final match. Richard Gasquet made Pospisil work for the victory, with the latter eventually winning 6-7(5), 6-3, 7-5. The closeness of the match could really be seen in service points, where Gasquet won 67 percent of his versus 68 percent won by Pospisil.

Now the 24-year-old, who’s ranked no. 36 in the world, is looking to topple his countryman and bring home the Citi Open title. “Personally, this is a first final for me so that’s great,” Pospisil said. “It’s more special that I am playing a Davis Cup teammate and a fellow Canadian. “This is great for tennis in Canada. I’ll try to do my best.”

The two play today at 3:00pm ET/12:00pm PST. So if you’re looking to do some Citi Open final betting, you should get your wagers in quick!