As the final Grand Slam of the year serves off tomorrow, Novak Djokovic is looking likely to triumph at Flushing Meadows. Defending Champions Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer have dominated Male tennis for a while now but the emergence of Novak Djokovic has broken their stronghold on the game.Both players have looked rusty and vulnerable of late and have been in the shadow of Djokovic this year and will be hoping to win the US Open to bounce back to reckoning. We preview some of the favourites for the US Open.
World number One, Novak Djokovic has been in impressive form this year, heading into the US Open as the number one ranked tennis player in the world. It marked the first time Djokovic was seeded number one for the year’s final Grand Slam.Djokovic has been in an incredible form winning the Australian Open and the Wimbledon Open, losing in the semi-final of the French Open to Roger Federer, his first loss of the year. Djokovic has lost just two games this season, though he has never won the US Open, he heads into this tournament as favourite.Last week in Cinccinati Open finals, Djokovic was in clear discomfort in the final against Murray and withdrew handing victory to Andy Murray in Djokovic’s second loss of the season. His withdrawal immediately raised concerns about his prospects at the US Open but he later said it was just a precaution, ‘‘I am confident that I can recover and be ready for the US Open," he said.
"It’s unfortunate that I had to finish this way.
"I apologise to the tournament. I apologise to the people who came here today to watch the match. I really tried (but) it didn’t make sense for me to continue’’. Djokovic has won 57 games this season and losing just two, he has won nine tournaments this season, including the Australian Open and Wimbledon. He defeated Nadal in the Wimbeldon Open final, making it five straight victories over Nadal.Djokovic will be hoping to emulate Nadal who won three out of four grand slams last year and a win in the US open will set Djokovic on course to challenge John McEnroe’s record of 82-3 mark from 1984. With the kind of form Djokovic is in right now, no one can bet against him clinching his third Grand Slam of the year.
World Number Two, Rafael Nadal had an inspired 2010, winning three out of four Grand Slam and was expected to continue his good form this year, but failed to win the Australian Open and the Wimbledon Open, winning only the French Open.Nadal, the defending champion of the US Open, is short of confidence at the moment and seem not to have found the answer to Djokovic .A win for Nadal in the US Open would be the first time that he’s successfully defended a championship on hard courts, as well as the first on any surface other than clay in consecutive years. Nadal with 10 Grand Slams still has his sights on catching Roger Federer who has 16 Grand Slam titles - a record. At just 25 years he still has time and age on his side. Nadal is under pressure to win the US Open to prove many things; One that he can dominate in his prime, he is not only chasing Federer’s record but trying to deal with Djokovic’s threat of dethroning him in his era. Nadal, also known as the king of court, is out to prove he can dominate on hard court as well because in Federer’s hey days he was dominant in all courts and carried an air of invincibility and he was able to intimidate his opponents for many years. So, Nadal knows that to be considered among the greats of tennis, he has to win the US Open and cannot retreat to again being only a King of Clay. That’s why this U.S. Open title is so crucial.
World Number Three, Roger Federer is regarded as the greatest tennis player ever. Having won an incredible 16 grand Slam titles, his domination of tennis was threatened by Nadal and now Djokovic. Roger Federer is having a hard season, having failed to win any grand slam this year and has not won a grand slam since the 2010 Australian open. After bouncing back into contention by beating Djokovic in the French Open semi-final, he eventually lost in the final to Nadal. Federer’s biggest motivation for winning the U.S. Open is probably the chance to put the "he’s-too-old-and-past-his-prime" narrative being written about him to rest, and prove he can still compete with the best. Federer has also appeared in 29 consecutive Grand Slam finals - a record, beating Jimmy Connor’s record. A win in the US Open will put him back into contention and grab his 17th Grand Slam
A win at Flushing Meadows would be significant for a couple other reasons, as well. It would be Federer’s sixth title overall, an unmatched record in the Open Era, breaking the tie with Pete Sampras and Jimmy Connors. Federer’s five in a row already stands alone.
The victory would also mean that Federer had won at least one grand slam for 9 consecutive years. Right now, he’s tied with Borg and Sampras at 8 years.
British Number One, Andy Murray has been trying to win his first grand slam for the past five years now and have always fallen short. He had a perfect preparation for the US Open winning the Cincinnati open last week after Djokovic withdrew due to injury.The last time Murray won the title in Ohio back in 2008, it preceded his best US Open performance, where he fell in the final to Roger Federer. And Murray is confident he can produce another impressive performance at Flushing Meadows.
"This court is very similar to the one in New York and it’s good to know I am playing well here in similar conditions and I hope I am going to have a good one". Beating the top seeds has always been Murray’s problem in grand slams and has always been falling in the side of Nadal’s draw and defeating Nadal is his one major problem. He has lost in the semi-final of the Wimbledon for the last two years to Nadal and it is likely he will meet Nadal again in the semi, if he can overcome Nadal then he is one step closer to winning his first Grand Slam.