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Can Another Outsider Spring a Shock at the US Open? 0

Posted on August 31, 2015 by Andre Smith
Could 17th seed Grigor Dimitrov be the next longshot to emerge with a major tennis title?

Could 17th seed Grigor Dimitrov be the next longshot to emerge with a major tennis title?

The fourth and final Grand Slam of the year, the US Open, is perhaps one of the favorites for the neutral tennis spectator as it throws up the potential of a shock winner.

For so long the men’s singles game has been dominated by the ‘big four’ of Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Andy Murray and Rafael Nadal, but with Marin Cilic winning at Flushing Meadows last year – and Stan Wawrinka’s famous victory over Djokovic on the French clay in June – it is fair to say that this tournament is wide open.

And that’s why this even is so intriguing; and why it is well worth keeping an eye on the US Open betting odds to see if you can pick out a potential surprise winner.

The Contenders
What was incredible about Marin Cilic’s victory in this tournament last year was that he wasn’t expected to even reach the latter stages, let alone lift the trophy, as the 14th seed. He’d only reached one Grand Slam semi final in his career up to that point, at the Australian Open in 2010, and had only ever gotten to the last eight at Flushing Meadows twice in five attempts.

But something just clicked in the Croatian’s game during that fortnight, and his straight sets wins over Kei Nishikori (another surprise) in the final and Federer in the semi-final, show that there can be demons in the hard courts of America for the more fancied players.

So who are the players to watch at this year’s event? Read the rest of this entry →

Grigor Ditmitrov Upset World No. 1 Novak Djokovic in Madrid 0

Posted on May 08, 2013 by JA Allen

The Madrid Match: Dimitrov 7-6, 6-7, 6-3

Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria

Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria

If you watched the match on Tuesday between world No. 1 Novak Djokovic and Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov, currently ranked world No. 28, perhaps you witnessed an historic match—much like the fourth round match between Pete Sampras and Roger Federer at Wimbledon in 2001.

The Swiss defeated Pistol Pete in five thrilling sets to send the American packing. Sampras would never again reign on Center Court after seven Wimbledon championships while Federer showed the world he could win the big one.

Like Federer, Dimitrov may not capitalize immediately but what the match fully illustrated was that the Bulgarian could win over the best. That critical step Dimitrov took today should instill him with enough confidence to stand toe to toe with anyone on court today. Time will tell, however,  whether this match stands the test of time.

Both combatants mesmerized tennis fans around the globe as the match ebbed and flowed first in Dimitrov’s favor, then in Djokovic’s. The Serb never quit trying to will his way across the finish line. When Dimitrov took the first set tie-break, we all believed that Djokovic was in a dog-fight—but one that he would win—eventually.

The second set unfolded with Djokovic down again, figuratively and literally, as he slipped on the baseline, temporarily injuring an already tender right ankle. But Djokovic righted the ship and won the second set tiebreak.

At that point we all believed that Dimitrov had fought the good fight—but surely the world No. 1 had the momentum to finish the youngster off in the third set. But 3 hours and 5 minutes later, Djokovic was gone and a new potential champion was left standing.

Read the rest of this entry →

Future of Tennis “Dark Horse” Candidates Get Ready for the Upcoming U.S. Open 3

Posted on July 25, 2011 by JA Allen

The faces of the future...Milos Raonic, for one.

It stands to reason that the term “dark horse” originates from the world of horse racing.

For those betting on the outcome, it meant that setting odds became difficult when a horse was not known to gamblers.

Today, in the world of sports or politics, it signifies that a person who was not well known emerged as a winner––an unexpected winner.

So while Juan Martin del Potro may not be a “favorite” entering the 2011 U.S. Open, the Argentine cannot be regarded as a “dark horse” because he is well-known in Flushing Meadows.

Del Potro won the US Open title in 2009.

True “dark horses” are not widely known by the general viewing public because they are relatively new on the tennis scene.

These young players have not made much of a name for themselves––yet.

To date, there are six young guns ready to make their way to the top of the men’s game.

They will become the “dark horses” in the upcoming US Open, representing the future of tennis on the men’s side of the draw.

Read the rest of this entry →

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    • Tony Oliva: Hall of Fame Worthy
      April 21, 2019 | 5:18 pm
      Tony Oliva

      Cuba is known for producing great baseball talent and there has arguably been no one from the island better than the Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month.

      Before injuries cut short his Hall of Fame worthy career, Tony Oliva was one of the best hitters in baseball and combined with Hall of Famers Rod Carew and Harmen Killebrew to make the Minnesota Twins a perennial American League contender during the late 1960s.

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