US Open Popcorn Matches: Serena Williams and Andy Murray in must-see Day Three action
The second round gets underway at the US Open on Wednesday, and Serena Williams and Andy Murray are just two of the stars you’re not going to want to miss.
Here are five popcorn matches from the order of play.
Serena Williams v Annet Kontaveit
There is no doubt that, during this US Open, any time Serena Williams plays it will be the must-see match of the day.
The atmosphere for her first round match was as electric as it gets, and it will be interesting to see if the same energy is generated for this one.
It’s New York, though, so my money would be on it being another huge occasion and, let’s dare to say it, it could be Serena Williams last ever singles match.
Andy Murray v Emilio Nava
Andy Murray went away from Wimbledon with a plan: Improve his ranking to be seeded for the US Open.
That didn’t happen as he struggled with cramping during the US hardcourt swing, but he hasn’t let that deter him. In fact he just went to Plan B, by beating 24th-seed Francisco Cerundolo in the first round.
That means he essentially took the Argentinian’s place in the draw, and his reward for that is a second-round match against world number 203 Emilio Nava.
Murray has not had much luck with Grand Slam draws in the last few years, so it will be interesting to see how he transitions back to being a big favourite once again.
Nick Kyrgios v Benjamin Bonzi
On paper, this one shouldn’t be an especially close affair. Everyone will be expecting Kyrgios to steamroller Frenchman Benjamin Bonzi, and there is every chance he will.
But it’s still a popcorn match for one very good reason – it’s Nick Kyrgios.
The Australian has really underlined his status as a real box office draw in tennis this summer, and it’s never boring when he is on the court.
Jack Draper v Felix Auger-Aliassime
Jack Draper’s match against Felix Auger-Aliassime is arguably the most intriguing of the entire day at the US Open.
You genuinely get the feeling that Auger-Aliassime is still barely scratching the surface of his potential. His tennis is very well-suited to the conditions and the US Open, too, and on his day he can legitimately beat anyone on the Tour.
Draper, meanwhile, has been one of the stories of the season and is enjoying a meteoric rise through the rankings.
This match will tell us a lot about whether Auger-Aliassime is ready to stamp his authority on matches and where Draper really is on his developmental curve. Definitely one to check out if you can.
Madison Keys v Camila Giorgi
Madison Keys is a former US Open finalist, and her big-hitting power game is always popular with the New York crowd.
The lighter ball really brings the best out of her shots too. If she can get it right at Flushing Meadows, Keys can put on a real show.
She won’t have it all her own way against Camila Giorgi, though. The Italian lacks the power to take herself to the upper reaches of the rankings, but she can still be aggressive and is a very solid counter-puncher.
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