The 108th Australian Open begins in earnest on Monday, with favourite Novak Djokovic looking to retain his title. He and his contenders will have to brave the Australian Summer weather, although it is expected to be quite a bit cooler than the usual highs of 27° on its January date. The event will take place in front of a sizable 30,000 daily capacity crowd at Melbourne Park; a lot more than sports watchers will have become accustomed to in recent times.
Defending Norman Brookes Challenge Cup champion Djokovic will face stiff competition from the likes of Dominic Thiem and perennial runner-up Rafael Nadal, while Naomi Osaka is looking to defend her women’s trophy after winning it for the first time a year ago. Last year, the men’s doubles title was won by Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicholas Mahut of France with Samantha Stosur and Shang Shuai taking home the women’s silverware. Barbora Krejcikova and Rajeev Ram won the mixed doubles title.
How to watch this year’s Australian Open
This year’s Australian Open will be available to watch in the UK on Eurosport (Sky Channel 410).
Australian Open TV Schedule:
Men’s and women’s singles first round – February 8
Men’s and women’s singles first round – February 9
Men’s and women’s singles second round – February 10
Men’s and women’s singles second round – February 11
Men’s and women’s singles third round – February 12
Men’s and women’s singles third round – February 13
Men’s and women’s singles fourth round – February 14
Men’s and women’s singles fourth round – February 15
Men’s and women’s singles quarter-finals – February 16
Men’s and women’s singles quarter-finals – February 17
Women’s semi-finals and first men’s semi-final – February 18
Second men’s semi-final – February 19
Australian Open Women’s final – February 20
Australian Open Men’s final – February 21
Australian Open Betting Preview
Djokovic’s three-in-a-row effort will be in more doubt than ever after a worker in the tournament’s hotel ‘Covid bubble’ means that as many as 600 competitors and tournament staff have to quarantine for longer than expected. This is likely to affect lines on tennis betting, likely more so than the tournament outright. Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said at a press conference on Wednesday evening that a 26-year-old man, who last worked at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Melbourne on 29 January, had tested positive for the virus. He said it is unlikely to affect the start of the tournament, telling local media: “I am confident that we all know what to do, that we have got this in good time, and we are working as hard as we possibly can.
“People will be working throughout the evening, and for as long as it takes, to track down every single close contact and to essentially contain and smother this.”
There is almost certainly going to be a disparity among players, particularly outside of the top ten. Depending on restrictions where different people are based, there will be a few who’ve been able to train freely before the tournament, while others will be coming out of quarantine with not nearly as much work done, through no fault of their own. We have already seen some creative training garner attention after social media posts from the likes of Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic, Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas, Kazakhstan’s Yulia Putintseva and Britain’s Heather Watson. They were placed in a two-week quarantine, as was everyone, after arriving in Melbourne, but there have been complaints about players not being able to prepare properly. Rafael Nadal has spoken of a need for a ‘wider perspective’, but we won’t know until the tournament is well and truly underway, what effect the strenuous lockdown has had on players.
Here are our Australian Open Tennis betting tips for the new-look 2021 tournament.
Men’s Australian Open Betting Tips
There won’t be anyone taking Novak Djokovic’s spot as the Australian Open tournament favourite (6/5) – he’s got all eyes on that ninth victory in Melbourne. Dominic Thiem (5/1) and Daniil Medvedev (5/1) both will be feeling some confidence, having taken wins over Djokovic at the season-ending Tour Finals in London during his unimpressive end to 2020, but it won’t deter most from backing him to produce on the big stage when needed.
We feel that this is the year where someone outside of your more standard ‘elite’ names like Djokovic and Nadal has a strong chance of winning. As mentioned before, Medvedev has a win over the tournament favourite, he beat Thiem to win the ATP finals and at 5/1 there is value backing the young Russian.
Men’s Australian Open Odds
Novak Djokovic 6/5 (2.20)
Rafael Nadal 5/1 (6.00)
Dominic Thiem 5/1 (6.00)
Daniil Medvedev 5/1 (6.00)
Stefanos Tsitsipas 12/1 (13.00)
Alexander Zverev 16/1 (17.00)
Andrey Rublev 25/1 (26.00)
Nick Kyrgios 28/1 (29.00)
Jannik Sinner 33/1 (34.00)
Denis Shapovalov 40/1 (41.00)
Women’s Australian Open 2021 Betting Tips
There are a strong contingent of people that believe Naomi Osaka is the one who will win the women’s Australian Open 2021, and the odds reflect this. We’ve got her priced at 5/1, which for a favourite in such an uncertain pool is definitely worth backing.
It’s never a wise idea to rule out a Ladies Australian Open Tennis legend like Serena Williams in a tournament like this, and at 9/1, she’s definitely someone who we can see people putting their money behind. Should she pick up another win in Melbourne, she will take home her eighth Australian Open title.
Women’s Australian Open Odds
Australian Open Women 2021 – Winner – EW 1/2 1-2 28 Feb | 12:00 AM
Naomi Osaka 5/1 (6.00)
Serena Williams 9/1 (10.00)
Aryna Sabalenka 9/1 (10.00)
Ashleigh Barty 9/1 (10.00)
Simona Halep 10/1 (11.00)
Sofia Kenin 11/1 (12.00)
Bianca Andreescu 14/1 (15.00)
Garbine Muguruza 14/1 (15.00)
Victoria Azarenka 14/1 (15.00)
Iga Swiatek 14/1 (15.00)
How to bet on the Australian Open
NetBet Sport has a wide selection of pre-Australian Open tournament markets available ahead of the start of play. During the tournament you will be able to bet in-play on all live games throughout the tournament, in our Tennis betting section.