The 2019 US Open is set to begin next week and with the smaller tournaments wrapping up there is a lot of talk about who are the key players to watch for in this years final grand slam of the season. Qualifying is already under way on both the men’s and women’s side of the competition but the main contenders will begin their quest when the event officially begins on Monday.
Of the four Grand Slam tournaments, the US Open has the most diverse list of champions over the past decade on the ATP side, featuring six different champions since 2009. Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal lead the way with three titles each during that time period, while Juan Martin del Potro (2009), Andy Murray(2012), Marin Cilic (2014) and Stan Wawrinka (2016) have all won the hard-court major once.
In comparison, only five players total — Djokovic, Nadal, Wawrinka, Roger Federer and Andy Murray — have combined to win the other three majors — the Australian Open, Roland Garros and Wimbledon — over the past decade. Defending champion Djokovic and Nadal are set to be the top two seeds at the 2019 edition, followed by Federer, Dominic Thiem and Daniil Medvedev. The 38-year-old Federer, who will be making his 19th appearance at Flushing Meadows, claimed a record straight five straight US Open titles from 2004-08 and has since finished runner-up on two other occasions (2009, 2015).
For the women and the WTA tour defending champion Naomi Osaka and reigning runner-up Serena Williams both claimed Top 8 positions as the USTA announced the women's singles seedings for the US Open on Wednesday. World No.1 Osaka heads the field with the No.1 seeding, as the Japanese superstar heads into New York City with aims of defending her title. Osaka defeated Williams to capture her first-ever Grand Slam title last season, and followed up by winning a second successive Grand Slam title at the Australian Open in January. Osaka is 14-0 in the last two hardcourt Grand Slam events. The other two current Grand Slam champions are also seeded in the Top 4. Australia's Ashleigh Barty, who won her first-ever Grand Slam title on the clay courts of Roland Garros, is seeded No.2, while Romania's Simona Halep, who earned her second Grand Slam title on the grass of Wimbledon, is seeded No.4. Former World No.1 Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic, who reached the US Open final in 2016, rounds out the Top 4 seeds, at No.3. Williams is seeded No.8, having reached the finals at her last two events, Wimbledon and the Rogers Cup in Toronto. The American legend goes into New York City seeking the 24th Grand Slam title of her career.
To get you excited for the tournament and all the action ahead check out the video below.