Friday at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre sees the remainder of the men’s second round of matches take place, with the final 16 places in round three up for grabs.
Thursday’s bets went one from two, with Leo Mayer providing a very comfortable winner on the handicap when the Argentine eased past Matt Ebden in straight sets.
Unfortunately, Nick Kyrgios was too good for Andreas Seppi later on in the day, with the young Aussie doing very well to continue playing at his best despite that arm problem.
In action today are Roger Federer, Stan Wawrinka, Tomas Berdych and David Ferrer and of these perhaps Ferrer has the trickiest task if opponent Bernard Tomic is in the mood.
I’m not too sure that he will be though after the Aussie revealed after his opening round win over Dustin Brown that he’s been suffering with flu for the past week and he was “a bit dead” before the win over the German.
So, it could be worth considering the minus 5.5 games on Ferrer in that one, with Tomic not exactly known for his fighting qualities when behind.
Friday’s conditions in New York are set to carry on falling, with temperatures in the mid 20s, while still fairly humid, and a slight breeze of around 5mph.
Gael Monfils vs Alejandro Gonzalez
Hopefully, this 16:00 UK time start on Grandstand will end up in a similar result to the Mayer match yesterday – and it should, based on ability on this surface.
Gonzalez is not hard court player and quite honestly he’s not really up to tour level let alone the second or third round of the US Open and if Monfils goes about this in a professional manner he should win very comfortably.
The Colombian had a virtual gimme in round one when he faced the crocked Dmitry Tursunov, who has a bad ankle problem and the Russian didn’t play at all in the nine weeks between Wimbledon and here.
Prior to that match Gonzalez was well beaten by Dustin Brown in Winston-Salem, Teimuraz Gabashivili in Cincy, Tomic in Washington and Jack Sock in Atlanta.
He doesn’t have the power to compete away from clay and Challengers on the dirt are about his level on a weekly basis on the tour.
Monfils went about what could have been a tricky match against American youngster Jared Donaldson with no blips and the teenager has more power in his game than Gonzalez, whose only hope here is for Monfils to lose the plot.
The minus 7.5 games on Lamonf at 1.64 looks a decent choice in this one.
Gilles Simon vs Federico Delbonis
Unfortunately – or fortunately, depending on your viewpoint – this one is not on a TV court, but surely Simon is far too short here to do what the layers think, which is to win in straight sets.
Admittedly, Delbonis hasn’t enjoyed the best of results on hard courts over the years and that’s where the price of 1.20 on Gillou comes from, but the Argentine has shown improvement this summer and he can take a set here.
He’s taken sets from Monfils and Jeremy Chardy this hard court swing and beaten Martin Klizan too before crushing young starlet Noah Rubin in round one here.
Perhaps the penny has finally dropped with Delbonis that he needs to play not only on clay to become a top player and the impression I get is that his attitude is a little different this time around on hard courts.
He’ll be confident today too, having easily negotiated the Rubin test, and he’s beaten Simon in straight sets in both of their prior meetings.
Both were on clay, but he was a comfortable winner each time and although it might end in a different result on clay he can win with a 2.5 set start at 1.65.
Discounting his gimme first rounder here, Simon hasn’t won a grand slam match in straight sets on a hard court since the 2010 US Open when he took down Donald Young.
Elsewhere, Federer should crush Sam Groth, who is not much more than a walking serve, although the over 9.5 games in set one might be interesting, as Fed has never faced Groth before.
David Goffin should have few problems with a fatigued Joao Sousa, but the Belgian is too short at 1.24 and I would prefer taking a chance on Alexander Kudryavtsev at 2.55 over Gabashvili.
There’s always a bit of guesswork involved with the fitness of Gaba, whose knee seems to be a problem fairly regularly and he looks short at 1.50 in this all-Russian affair.
Back Monfils –7.5 games to beat Gonzalez at 1.64
Back Delbonis +2.5 sets to beat Simon at 1.65