Williams and Sharapova to meet in US Open first round

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Serena Williams will start her bid for a seventh US Open singles crown against familiar foe Maria Sharapova.

Williams’ match-up with Sharapova is the pick of the women’s first-round draw, which sees British number one Johanna Konta start out against Russia’s Daria Kasatkina.

Sharapova upset Williams to win the Wimbledon title in 2004, a result which prevented the American from claiming a third consecutive title at SW19.

But 23-times Grand Slam singles champion Williams holds a convincing 19-2 lead in their head-to-head battles, with the 2012 Olympics, 2013 French Open and 2015 Australian Open among her final victories over the Russian.

Konta, the number 16 seed, has an awkward first-round assignment as Kasatkina has won their two previous meetings in Moscow and Dubai.

Number one seed Naomi Osaka starts the defence of her title against Russia’s Anna Blinkova.

Wimbledon 2019 – Day Eight – The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club
British number one Johanna Konta has been drawn against Russia’s Daria Kasatkina in the first round of the US Open women’s singles (Victoria Jones/PA)

Wimbledon sensation Cori Gauff has a fascinating first-round tie with Anastasia Potapova. The 15-year-old Gauff reached the fourth round at SW19 and received a wild card to play at Flushing Meadows. Russian Potapova is a former junior number one, as well as the 2016 Wimbledon girls’ singles champion.

Wimbledon 2019 – Day Seven – The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club
Wimbledon sensation Cori Gauff received a wild card to play at the US Open (Mike Egerton/PA)

Britain has three players in the men’s draw – Kyle Edmund, Dan Evans and Cameron Norrie. British number one Kyle Edmund, the 30th seed, meets Spanish veteran Pablo Andujar in the first round, while Evans comes up against Adrian Mannarino of France. Norrie has been drawn against a qualifier ahead of what could be a second-round meeting with 15th seed David Goffin.

Three-time champion Novak Djokovic, the number one seed, begins the defence of his title against Spain’s Roberto Carballes Baena. Djokovic is in the same half of the draw as five-time champion Roger Federer, who will play a qualifier in the first round, and is projected to meet the dangerous Russian Daniil Medvedev in the quarter-final.

Second seed Rafael Nadal has a tricky opening against John Millman, the Australian who beat Federer in four sets at the US Open 12 months ago.

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Sunday 5th April - US Racing Acca

Up to £100 in Bet Credits for new customers at bet365. Min deposit £5. Bet Credits available for use upon settlement of bets to value of qualifying deposit. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply.


Tampa Bay Downs

Lem Me Tel Ya To Win

He has won four times from 6f to 7f. A winner at 14-1 at Tampa Bay Downs over 6f on his latest outing last month, beating Resident. Expect another bold showing.


Tampa Bay Downs

Kalu To Win

Successful twice at 6f. Won on his latest outing when 11-10fav at Tampa Bay Downs over 6f last month, beating Minnesota Lucky. Another bold bid from the front beckons as he drops in class.


Tampa Bay Downs

Majestic Melody To Win

Won on his latest outing when 2-5fav at Tampa Bay Downs over 7f in February last year, beating Alfred The Great. The absence has to be a worry, but his stable is in form.


Tampa Bay Downs

Classy Of Course To Win

Successful twice at 1m on good ground. A winner at 5-1 at Tampa Bay Downs over 1m (good) on her latest outing last month, beating Don’t Fight by 3 1/2l. Expected to give another good account from on or near the pace.


Tampa Bay Downs

Speeding Starlet To Win

Winner of five races at 1m. Third of 7 behind Scarlet Bow beaten at 2-1 on her latest outing at Tampa Bay Downs over 1m in February. Having her first run for a new stable today, previously with Gerald Bennett. Goes well at this venue and a bold bid seems assured.


Tampa Bay Downs

Jais’s Solitude To Win

He has won three times from 7f to 1m 4f on good ground. Beaten 6l behind March To The Arch at 8-1 when last of 9 on his latest outing at Gulfstream over 1m (good) in January. Drops significantly in grade and it will be disappointing if he fails to make his presence felt.

Returns and odds correct at time of publishing.