U.S. Open Tennis: Can anyone halt the Djokovic Grand Slam sweep?

Fans are returning to the U.S. Open this year, but some of the top male tennis players won't be.
The top men's seeds at this year's U.S. Open.
The top men's seeds at this year's U.S. Open.@usopen on Twitter

As we head into the 2021 US Open at Flushing Meadows in New York, numerous top contenders have fallen by the wayside, announcing their withdrawal from the men’s tournament. Roger Federer heads to further surgery, while Rafael Nadal has brought his tennis season to a premature close, leaving Novak Djokovic seemingly destined to claim yet another title.

The Serbian has already won three Grand Slam tournaments this year, triumphing at the Australian Open in Melbourne, the French Open at Roland-Garros in Paris, then on the hallowed turf at the Wimbledon Championships in London. Now the 34-year-old has the 2021 US Open marked for unique reasons, as not only can he become the first player ever to win 21 Grand Slam tournaments, yet another amazing feat is within reach.

Djokovic aiming for the Super Slam

Something special is about to happen in men’s tennis, providing Djokovic can live up to his typically expectations. If he manages to win the 2021 US Open, he will become only the second male to win the Super Slam. Also known as the Calendar Slam, this is the feat of winning all four Grand Slam titles in one calendar year.

Understandably, this is a phenomenally difficult accomplishment and especially in the modern age of tennis. For almost 20 years the pinnacle of the sport has been dominated by Federer and Nadal, with Djokovic swiftly closing the gap on their achievements over the last decade. However, none of these great players has ever won the coveted Super Slam.

Don Budge was the first player to win the Super Slam, claiming all four Grand Slam titles way back in 1938, although the American accomplished this feat when tennis was governed by amateur associations. The next was Australian legend Rod Laver in 1962, then after a power struggle brought professionalism and the Open Era, he repeated the feat in 1969.

Considering all the iconic male tennis players we have witnessed over the years, it speaks volumes of the professionalism and tournament quality, plus the outstanding talents who have competed, given that nobody has achieved the Super Slam since Laver. None have come closer than Federer or Nadal, yet it might be atptour.com rankings leader Djokovic who achieves the one thing they could not.

2021 US Open Men’s Contenders

Due to the absence of both Federer and Nadal, followed by the additional withdrawal of reigning 2020 US Open champion Dominic Thiem, the quality of competition standing in the way of Djokovic is significantly reduced. Unsurprisingly, the Serbian superstar is priced as outright favorite with all the leading sportsbooks.

Nevertheless, the 2021 US Open still offers plenty of potential for surprises. The first good tip will be to visit asiabet.org for honest betting site reviews and expert guides. These feature well-researched site comparisons, exclusively focused on bookmakers who are regulated and secure, accompanied by all the latest betting strategies and sound advice.

Once you have browsed through a few sportsbook reviews, find the best value by checking which sites offer the best bonuses and promotions, then compare outright odds for the 2021 US Open. While there is little to no variance in those offered for Djokovic to reign supreme, the odds for some of the other leading contenders can vary significantly, suggesting there may be opportunities to find value in betting against the Serbian.

Most sportsbooks agree that Russian talent Daniil Medvedev will be the biggest challenger, as the 25-year-old reached the 2021 Australian Open final, along with the 2019 US Open final. Alexander Zverev will also have lofty ambitions to match his 6 ft s in height, having reached the US Open final in 2020, plus the semifinals of the 2021 French Open, and won gold at the Tokyo Olympics. In terms of their abilities, these are the two strongest options to topple Djokovic.

Will anyone or anything deny Djokovic his glory?

The simple answer to that question is no, probably not. Djokovic is almost like an unstoppable force this year, powering relentlessly through everything and everyone in his path. However, we are still talking about a flesh and blood human and if one thing might be a nemesis for Novak, it could be his physical condition when the usopen.org tournament schedule becomes clearer.

Djokovic was tipped for gold medals at the Tokyo Olympics tennis tournaments, yet he looked jaded in the humid conditions, losing to Alexander Zverev in the semifinals, then Pablo Carreño Busta to miss out on one bronze medal. He also pulled out of the chance to win a mixed doubles bronze, citing both mental and physical exhaustion. For this reason, pay careful attention to how Djokovic looks in the early rounds, as there may be potential for an upset.

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