The quarter finals of the US Open conclude in New York on Wednesday when the second half of the matches take place on the Arthur Ashe Stadium on what is expected to be another hot and humid day at Flushing Meadows.
We have already seen the likes of Coco Gauff and Novak Djokovic breeze into the semi-finals and on Wednesday stars such as Carlos Alcaraz and Aryna Sabalenka will look to join them across the four matches we have on the schedule.
Qinwen Zheng vs Aryna Sabalenka
The opening match of the day sees the world number one in waiting Aryna Sabalenka looking to make it through to the semi-final of the US Open when she meets the Chinese star Qinwen Zheng, who will be competing in her first match at this stage of a Grand Slam.
Sabalenka is looking for her second Grand Slam of the year after landing the Australian Open at the beginning of it and she has looked in insane form in this tournament. She has breezed through the draw without dropping a set and has only lost 16 games in her first four matches. She feels a worthy favourite in this one. Zheng has had much more of a battle to get to this stage. She has the clean hitting ability to get the job done against anyone but she was a break down in the final set to Lucia Bronzetti in the third round and took advantage of Ons Jabeur being below par in the last round. These two have never met before but you feel this one is on the racquet of the world number one in waiting, however the odds are fully reflective of that.
Daniil Medvedev vs Andrey Rublev
The men’s match in the day session sees the two leading Russian players in the game battling it out when Daniil Medvedev, the 2021 champion who has flown under the radar so far, takes on his compatriot Andrey Rublev for a spot in the last four.
All of the attention at the tournament has been on Carlos Alcaraz and Novak Djokovic but Medvedev won’t mind that. He has breezed into the quarter final and you sense he is ready to announce himself back on the big stage here. He came from a set down to see off the form horse Alex de Minaur but has largely cruised through to this stage. Rublev has had to battle, admittedly against stronger opposition, and the way he flipped his lid when things weren’t going well against Jack Draper in the previous round is very much a concern. To his credit, he came through and won that match but Draper faded physically else that could have been a different encounter entirely. There is a reason why Rublev has played in eight Grand Slam quarter finals and hasn’t won any of them and I don’t see him winning this either. Once again though, the odds reflect Medvedev’s chances.
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Marketa Vondrousova vs Madison Keys
I think the better two matches from a competitive point of view come along in the night session and it is the women who get things underway when the Wimbledon champion Marketa Vondrousova looks to make it into successive Grand Slam semi-finals when she goes up against the former finalist in New York in Madison Keys.
Vondrousova had looked every bit of the Wimbledon champion in the early rounds in this competition but she nearly met her match in the previous round when Peyton Stearns almost got the better of her. The Czech was visibly struggling with a shoulder injury in that match and while she battled hard to get over the line in that one, the weight of shot that Keys offers up could be a bit of an issue. I’m anything but a fan of Keys on the big stage but the way she demolished the number three seed Jessica Pegula in the previous round was very encouraging and if Vondrousova starts to feel her shoulder here and her service speed drops again you would imagine Keys will get on top of this one pretty quickly. Incredibly this is the first meeting of these two but it is one I expect the physically better Keys to come through.
Carlos Alcaraz vs Alexander Zverev
The last of the quarter finals sees Carlos Alcaraz continuing the defence of his title when the outgoing world number one takes on the finalist of 2020 in Alexander Zverev in the pick of the clashes at this stage of the event.
Alcaraz has been a bit of a showreel in this tournament and has dropped just the one set but I think it is fair to say that he meets his toughest test here. Dan Evans kept up with Alcaraz for much of their third round clash but ultimately lacked the firepower to get through him regularly enough. Zverev has that and the fact he leads their head-to-head 3-2 will encourage the German, particularly with him winning both of their hard court meetings. They were in 2021 though while Alcaraz was coming through so it might be different here. I think Zverev will give Alcaraz his toughest test so far but having to go nearly five hours to get the better of Jannik Sinner in the previous round just can’t be helpful to his chances and the longer this one goes the more likely it is that Alcaraz will win. I suspect the first set is huge here, especially if it is a lengthy one. I don’t see Zverev winning if he drops the first set. In fact, if he realises having invested an hour of energy that he’ll need to invest three more to win his head might drop and he tires leading Alcaraz to pull clear. That is the danger to a handicap so I’m ready to leave this one alone and just watch a match which will hopefully deliver the quality it has the potential to do.
Back M.Keys to beat M.Vondrousova for a 3/10 stake at 1.80 with Betway