With the season’s fourth and final grand slam set to begin in late August, we’ve analysed every singles match over the last decade to predict how this year’s tournament will unfold in our 2022 US Open tennis preview.
How often does a top seed win?
The top players have dominated in the men’s singles, with eight of the last 10 tournaments having been won by one of the top three seeds. It’s been a completely different story for the women, with half of the 10 most recent singles titles going to players seeded 15th or worse, including two who were not seeded at all.
How likely are we to see a surprise?
The route to the final has also witnessed few shocks in the men’s game, with seven out of every 10 finalists having begun the tournament as one of the top four seeds. Only one unseeded player has made it to the semi-final stage during the last decade; Grigor Dimitrov in 2019.
Again, we find that the women’s singles is much harder to predict, with a quarter of the players reaching the final in the last decade having been unseeded at the start of the tournament. This includes both of the 2021 finalists – Emma Raducanu and Leylah Fernandez – and Victoria Azarenka the year before.
Does home advantage matter?
North American players rarely reach the latter stages of the men’s singles, with only four having gotten to the quarter-finals in the last decade. Denis Shapovalov made it to this stage in 2020 and fellow Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime did so last year, so 2022 could make it three in a row.
The last North American winner of the men’s singles was Andy Roddick in 2003, who was also the most recent finalist from the continent in 2006. All but one of the 18 tournaments since then have been won by a European.
North American players are far more successful in the women’s game than the men’s, although Europeans still dominate the field. However, five of the last 10 women’s singles champions have been either American or Canadian; Serena Williams’ three in a row from 2012 to 2014, Sloane Stephens in 2017 and Bianca Andreescu two years later.
Which players perform best?
Novak Djokovic has reached six of the last 10 finals, so his expected absence would create something of a power vacuum. Daniil Medvedev would be the obvious beneficiary as he has made it at least as far as the semi-finals in each of the last three tournaments, beating Djokovic to win his first US Open title last year.
While not expected to win this time around, Serena Williams has reached at least the semi-finals in eight of the last 10 tournaments and will surely be looking to end her career with a strong showing.
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