From the moment dominant world number one Novak Djokovic crashed out of Wimbledon in the third round, Andy Murray must have thought this year’s renewal of the biggest tennis tournament anywhere was his for the taking.
Despite Milos Raonic’s fine run to the final, with the Canadian dispatching Djokovic’s nemesis Sam Querrey before seeing off seven-time champion Roger Federer in a five-set semi, Murray looks about right at skinny 13/50 odds with sports.bwin.
Raonic backers will gobble up 3/1 about their man, but a glance at the head-to-head stats give the advantage to Murray emphatically, with the Scot on a five-game winning streak against his next foe across three different surfaces.
The last time Raonic managed to best Murray was over two years ago at Indian Wells, on hard courts where the 25-year-old tends to excel.
Indeed, Murray has seen off Raonic to love in their past two matches on clay, the last comprehensively 6-2 6-0 less than three months ago, but the younger man took two sets off his more medalled opponent at the Australian Open earlier this year.
The pair’s first meeting on grass came only a couple of weeks ago in the AEGON final, just north of the River Thames at Queen’s, where the big-serving challenger took the defending champion to three sets, winning the first with a tie-break and losing out 6-7 6-4 6-3 eventually.
With this in mind, and considering recent results between these two on anything but hard courts, sports.bwin’s 17/10 about 3-0 Murray seems a little short.
You can have 2/1 on 3-1 to the 2013 champion, which looks just as likely as a whitewash if not more, while backing another first-set tie-break at 23/20 seems shrewd.
The bookies’ 5/6 about the first set consisting of at least 11 games also appeals considering Murray and Raonic’s Queen’s clash.
For those of a completely contrarian view, Raonic 3-0 is available at 11/1.