2012 Australian Open Tennis Futures - Down Under Hopefuls
Australian Open Futures Starts 2012 Grand Slam Season

Australian Open Futures Market: Who will win the 2012 Aussie Open

As the first Grand Slam of the year approaches, the all-consuming question of who will win the coveted trophy is making the rounds in tennis betting circles. Now, I’ll admit it is a bit premature to even contemplate answering this question at this point, seeing that the qualifying rounds aren’t even completed and the draw is yet to be released. So it’s a bit of a cart-before-horse situation. But if you’re a diehard fan, it’s simply too seductive to put off for any longer. I mean, it’s the first Grand Slam of the season. Besides, bookmakers have already gone to press with the futures odds. And I mean, since they are there, for all to bet on at will, why not give a little bit of a preview of the 2012 Australian Open with some early predictions and picks.  

The Contenders in the Men’s Field:

Novak Djokovic     +135

 it’s hardly surprising that Novak Djokovic leads the pack going into the 2012 Australian Open. The Serbian starlet started his unforgettable 2011 season by winning the Aussie Open after all. Moreover, he showed he was more than ready to defend his title Down Under when he beat Federer in 44 minutes at the pre-season exhibition event in Abu Dhabi, en route to the title.

Roger Federer     +275
By virtue of his 16-Grand Slam titles, Federer is always going to be considered a contender at a Grand Slam, even now after having crossed the 30-year-old mark. That said, Federer did withdraw from the first event of the season in Doha with a back injury and, although he insists he’ll be ready for a successful campaign Down Under, the question mark still hangs over his head.  The first week for Federer will be telling.

Rafael Nadal    +500
it’s rather surprising that Rafael Nadal is tipped so long ahead of the Australian Open. True, he’s admitted to a shoulder injury but, then again, Federer copped to a back injury and he’s listed much at much shorter odds.  Given this price tag, 10-time Grand Slam winner Nadal seems to be a value bet to good to skip.

Andy Murray     +500
Andy Murray has long been considered a contender and so he is again in the mix. He has yet to win a Grand Slam title, although he has been to three finals. There is no question that he has the quality and talent to win but his inexplicable failures make him an unpopular choice.

Best Long Shot Bets:
The best long shot bets in the men’s game have to be Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, a former Aussie Open finalist, trading at +1500; and former US Open champion Juan Martin Del Potro, who is listed at +1200

The Contenders in the Women’s Field

Petra Kvitova     +275
Last year’s Wimbledon champion, Petra Kvitova has to be one of the best bets in the women’s game to win the Australian Open this year. The Czech rising star epitomizes the power-playing style that has taken over the women’s game and she is the only emerging star who has proven to have the confidence to win the big titles. Especially promising for her run in Melbourne is that she is coming off a Year-end Tour winning title and a successful week at the Hopmans Cup last week.

Victoria Azarenka     +600
According to the bookmakers, Victoria Azarenka is a contender for the Australian Open title. The Belarusian has game, no question about it but to expect her to win a Grand Slam when she has yet to reach a final is a bit of a stretch.

Kim Clijsters     +600
Defending Australian Open champion Kim Clijsters is a huge question mark for the Australian Open, given that she spent most of the second half of 2011 on the sidelines with injuries.

Samantha Stosur     +800
US Open champion and home favourite Samantha Stosur is definitely a player to watch Down Under when the tournament gets underway next week. Stosur beat Serena Williams convincingly at Flushing Meadows to win her first-ever Grand Slam and that could provide dividends in Melbourne when she attempts to claim a second title before adoring home fans.

BEST Long shot bets:
The best long shot bet in the women’s game are French Open champion Li Na, also last year’s finalist in Melbourne, who is trading at a whopping +1500; Three-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova at +1400; and World No.1 Caroline Wozniacki at +1000.