US Open 2019 Women's Preview, Latest Odds and Top Tips

US Open 2019 Women's Preview, Latest Odds and Top Tips

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If the men’s US Open looks predictable, the women’s appears anything but. Naomi Osaka looked to be finally rediscovering the form which brought her two consecutive Slam titles but a knee injury sustained in Cincinnati places a big question mark over her chances of retaining her title at Flushing Meadows.

Also under an injury cloud is Serena Williams who pulled out of the first set of the Rogers Cup Final in Toronto with spasms in her upper back. The G.O.A.T. has been beaten three times in Slam finals and remains without a tournament win since returning from childbirth.

As Williams approaches her 38th birthday, it could be that her ageing body prevents her claiming that elusive 24th Grand Slam triumph. I’m surprised to see she is currently favourite with the best tennis betting sites, 5/1 with Black Type the biggest price about.

Women’s US Open Odds (As of 26/08/2019)

Serena Williams5/1
Simona Halep8/1
Ashleigh Barty10/1
Naomi Osaka12/1
Madison Keys14/1
Bianca Andreescu14/1
Karolina Pliskova14/1
Angelique Kerber25/1
Sofia Kenin28/1
Elina Svitolina28/1

It’s Barty Time

In my opinion, the clear pick based on form in recent weeks, and over the course of the season, is Ashleigh Barty. Regular readers will know I strongly fancied her for Wimbledon for several months and she was sent off favourite before a shock last 16 defeat to Alison Riske.

After an early exit in Toronto to Sofia Kenin, she marched through to the semi-finals in Cincinnati where she bumped into a resurgent Svetlana Kuznetsova. The pair had never met before but for the Australian it must have been a shock to meet someone with a very similar game to herself. And there are few finer sights in women’s tennis than ‘Sveta’ in form. More on her later.

Before this season, Barty was a grass-court specialist who could perform well on hard courts. But she won her first Premier event at Miami before taking a surprise first Slam in the French Open. The speed of the courts - which were slower last year than in the past - certainly won’t bother her.

The Australian is 10/1 with William Hill to claim her second Slam of 2019 and that looks fair enough for an each-way bet, especially given she looks to be one of very few players you could back with any confidence right now. Her draw does not look overly taxing with Williams, from a form perspective, looking her first big threat in the quarter-finals.

Get Ready To Back Kenin

After her wins over Barty and Osaka, Kenin’s price has shortened considerably. She has had an excellent season with her win over Serena Williams at Roland Garros helping propel her into the top 20 of the rankings. I tipped her at big odds for Wimbledon but she went out to Dayana Yastremska, a defeat she avenged in Toronto.

The fancy prices have disappeared but, having turned down the 25/1 with Betfair available last week, I’m a backer now. The reason is that she’s been handed what looks a fairly winnable quarter. Her semi-final conqueror Madison Keys is a potential third-round opponent but Kenin has a happy knack of avenging previous defeats (see Yastremska and potential fourth-round opponent Elina Svitolina for proof).

The favourite for that third quarter is Karolina Pliskova who seems to have reverted to her frustrating self in Slams this year. The Czech reached the final here in 2016 but hasn’t been in great form of late and is readily opposed. So Kenin at 8/1 with Bet365 to win her quarter looks a big price.

Simona Halep must be respected after her Wimbledon success despite premature exits at Toronto and Cincinnati. But even the 8/1 with William Hill looks skinny, especially when you look at the way the draw at SW19 fell apart.

With the likes of Pliskova, Angelique Kerber and Sloane Stephens out of form, and Petra Kvitova still recovering from her arm injury, many of the usual suspects are just not betting propositions at present.

Bianca Andreescu claimed her second Premier win of the season in Toronto after Williams’ withdrawal, but her physical issues are well-documented and I have real concerns about her lasting the two weeks. This will be her first main draw appearance at the US Open, and she has never previously reached the third round of a major.

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Kuznetsova Far Too Big A Price

Back to Kuznetsova who won the US Open way back in 2004. Injury and form have deserted her in recent years but the 34-year-old was superb in Cincinnati before losing two close sets in the final to Madison Keys. For years, a flash of form would convince me to chuck a few quid on her for the French Open but even I lost the faith some time ago. Given the doubts over the protagonists, there are worse long-shots and the 75/1 with Unibet (from 100/1) still looks generous.

The Russian looks to have a winnable quarter too with Halep, Andreescu, Stephens and Kvitova the big names in there making the 16/1 with Bet365 far too big to ignore. Let’s hope Cincinnati was more than a last rage against the dying of the light in the career of this wonderful and mercurial talent.

As for Keys, there was a time when I thought she was the future of women’s tennis. This year hasn’t been her best although she did win on the green clay of Charleston and reached the quarter-finals at Roland Garros before falling to eventual winner Barty. Her Cincinnati win was a real return to form, but I would want far bigger than the 14/1 with BetVictor to consider a bet.

The first quarter looks wide open with Osaka, Kiki Bertens and Aryna Sabalenka among those struggling for form. The player I’m interested in here is Donna Vekic who keeps threatening a breakthrough without ever quite delivering. That said, the Croatian has improved steadily over the last two years and a good showing in New York would see her crack the top 20 for the first time.

The last two Slams have fallen apart with few top-rankers making it through to the latter stages. Sabalenka, or her first round opponent Victoria Azarenka, in round three would be a tough test followed by Bertens in R4 and Osaka in the quarter-finals. There’s no guarantee any of them will get that far and Vekic looks a bet at 20/1 with Ladbrokes to reach the semis. And I can’t resist a couple of quid each-way at 100/1 again with Ladbrokes outright just in case it does all come together.

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