#1 Rafael Nadal
#12 Mikhail Youzhny
There is just one more step to get to the US Open betting finale for both Rafael Nadal and Mikhail Youzhny, and they’ll square off on the center stage of the courts in Flushing on Super Saturday.
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This is old hat for the Spaniard, who is now playing in his third semifinal in a row here at the US Open. The problem that he is having is that is getting out of this stage. Last year, it was Martin Del Potro that came out of nowhere to beat him. Could Youzhny be next? Rafa is now playing in his 14th career Grand Slam semifinal. The key is going to be whether or not there is going to be a man who can break Nadal’s serve on a remotely consistent basis. Fernando Verdasco only successfully did it once in the quarterfinals, while no one else has had even half a chance of taking out one of the most feared man in tennis. Nadal hasn’t lost a set yet here at Flushing and will look to use that momentum to move into his first US Open finale.
For the Russian, this is virtually uncharted territory. Youzhny has only played in one Grand Slam semifinal in his career, and it happened to be here in the Big Apple. He lost that year to Roger Federer, who eventually went on to win the event. It certainly hasn’t been a short road to get to the semis for the Russian. He did pass the opening test in the first round with flying colors in straight sets, but since then, all four of the opponents to face Youzhny have taken at least one set. Stanislas Wawrinka won the first set in the quarterfinals, but Youzhny fired back with a huge second set tiebreaker victory at 9-7. Though the third set was lost, Youzhny won the fourth and fifth sets by identical 6-3 scores and will now carry that momentum into the semis. He was broken seven times in five sets though against Wawrinka, and the pressure is sure to kick up here against arguably the best player in the entire world.
Youzhny is getting absolutely no respect here, and probably for good reason. Still, at this juncture, there is no reason to lay these types of odds. Rafa could just as easily end up getting those butterflies in his stomach about the fact that he has never even been to a finale at this event. We’ll take a chance with the Russian here at these ridiculous odds, as we expect him to at least put up a solid fight.
Selection: Mikhail Youzhny +1000 at BetPhoenix
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