2010 Men's Australian Open preview
It's time for the first of the tennis year's four Grand Slam tournaments with all the big names lining up at Melbourne Park for the 2010 Australian Open, and this year looks set to be one of the most exciting yet.
Although there will always be the given hype surrounding bookies' favourite Roger Federer (11/4) and defending champion Rafael Nadal (9/2), their dominance of men's tennis is unmistakably over and this year's Melbourne event for the gentlemen at least, is possibly one of the most open to date.
Third favourite in the Australian Open outright betting behind the ‘big-two', Andy Murray (9/2) is looking in good shape and believes he could be on right track to break his Grand Slam duck.
Travelling to Melbourne off the back of three from four Hopman Cup victories last week, the 22-year-old Scot is in the kind of form which could see a 2010 advance beyond his best ever final 16 appearances in both 2007 and 2009.
"I feel ready and well prepared - I have trained hard and if I play my best, as I did in Perth, I think there's a good chance I can win the event." said the Scot .
Murray - who will fall behind Juan Martin del Potro in the new world rankings - is seeded fifth in Melbourne, meaning he could have to beat Federer, Nadal and Novak Djokovic if he is to go on at claim the 2010 title.
2009 Australian Open quarter finalist, ATP World Tour finalist and 2009 US Open winner Juan Martin del Potro (5/1) will again be flying the flag for Argentina.
On his day he can take down the best in the business (injuries aside) and should be watched closely on Melbourne's plexicushion surface.
Victories over Verdasco, Federer, and Murray at the O2 in London before Christmas have assisted Delpo' in become the highest-ranked Argentine and the fourth-ranked player in the world.
11/2 shot Novak Djokovic is always dangerous. He's stayed low key recently and stuck to tennis rather than verbal's aimed towards Andy Murray...
He was victorious over both Federer and Nadal - the former in Federer's back garden of Basel and the latter at the Paris Masters - and he's quite capable of getting off the the best start in 2010.
Based on recent form, the Serb has to be considered one of the favorites in Australia.
The veteran Nikolay Davydenko (7/1) is doing very well. He could win a major this year or some big tournaments if he keeps up the good work. The Russian has now defeated Roger Federer twice in a row.
And glancing even further down the 2010 Australian Open outright betting, we've the next crop of upset possibilities; Roddick (20/1), Tsonga (25/1), Soderling (25/1), Verdasco (50/1), Nalbandian, Gonzalez and Monfils at 100/1 and further still, Lleyton Hewitt and Marcos Baghdatis (125/1).
All massive names on the tour, all by no means an easy match for any of the top seeds and all ,although not in with a real chance of lifting the Australian trophy this year, they ARE sure to make this year's Australian Open one of the best yet.
The days of any tournament being a foregone conclusion are now over, let the first Grand Slam of 2010 begin!
Here at William Hill, we intend to get you as involved in the action as possible, so make sure you keep an eye on the William Hill TV schedule to see which of the 2010 Australian Open matches we'll be bringing to you live!