Anything can happen in New York after US Open draw

The final Grand Slam of the 2022 season has served up some intriguing contests out in New York.

Daniil Medvedev posing with his US Open 2021 trophy in Flushing Meadows.© Paul Zimmer/FFT
 - Alex Sharp

The city of New York is renowned for putting on a show and now the tennis is ready to star under the spotlight Stateside.

 Anything can happen in the Big Apple and there is a sense plenty of players could make their mark when the main draw begins on Monday.

Defending champions learn fate

Can they retain their title? 2021 winner Daniil Medvedev is the first player outside the ‘Big Four’ to be seeded No.1 at a Grand Slam since 2004!

It a small but significant shift – Medvedev is the hunted, the been-there-done it youngster. The favourite?

The 26-year-old, opening against American world No.110 Stefan Kozlov, has College tennis sensation Ben Shelton – who recently upset Casper Ruud in Cincinatti – and an in the zone Nick Kyrgios in his top quarter. A repeat of Medvedev versus Kyrgios from Montreal would be a treat.

Stefanos Tsitsipas, Ruud, Felix Auger-Aliassime, Matteo Berrettini and two former champions (Andy Murray and Dominic Thiem) bolster the top half too.

12 months on from a fairytale maiden major triumph, all the way from qualifying, Emma Raducanu has been dealt a particularly tricky first hurdle.

Set to play her WTA record 63rd consecutive Grand Slam, Alize Cornet awaits. The Frenchwoman clinched a quarter-final ticket in Melbourne and halted Iga Swiatek’s 37-match winning streak at Wimbledon. This is going to be one hell of a battle.

Watch out for four-time major winner Naomi Osaka versus Danielle Collins in that second quarter too.

Serena Williams thinking at the US Open© Corinne Dubreuil/FFT

Serena set for last dance

Ahead of the draw, there was a buzz about where six-time US Open champion Serena Williams would land in her final professional tournament.

The unseeded icon was placed in the bottom half to duel with world No.80 Danka Kovinic. The Montenegrin was very happy, Tweeting “What a moment!” in capital letters.

Kovinic has major pedigree, reaching the last 32 in Melbourne and Roland-Garros in 2022. Will it be a swift goodbye for Serena?

The victor would potentially clash with No.2 seed Anett Kontaveit next in a fourth quarter including Wimbledon finalist Ons Jabeur. The bottom half is brimming with stars; home charge Coco Gauff, rejuvenated Simona Halep (back in the Top 10), 2019 champion Bianca Andreescu and in-form Caroline Garcia will all have a say.

Projected quarter-finals


Swiatek (1) vs Pegula (8)

Badosa (4) vs Sabalenka (6)

Halep (7) vs Sakkari (3)

Jabeur (5) vs Kontaveit (2)


Medvedev (1) vs Auger-Aliassime (6)

Tsitsipas (4) vs Ruud (5)

Hurkacz (8) vs Alcaraz (3)

Norrie (7) vs Nadal (2)

Iga back on track?

Seemingly nothing could derail world No.1 Swiatek earlier this season as the 21-year-old stormed to six straight titles. However, since Cornet erased her 37 winning run, it’s been a mixed bag with a 4-3 record.

The Pole will be eager to improve her US Open best from 2020 in the last 16 . First up it’s Italian pocket rocket Jasmine Paolini with former Grand Slam winners Sofia Kenin, Petra Kvitova, Garbine Muguruza and Jelena Ostapenko all in the mix in close quarters.

Rafael Nadal during the 2019 US Open.© Corinne Dubreuil/FFT

Nadal shooting for Slam 23

Considering his persistent injury concerns, 22-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal heads to Flushing Meadows in prime position to regain the No.1 ranking for the first time since February 2020.

The Roland-Garros winner, taking on Australia’s wild card Rinky Hijikata, is back in contention following an abdominal tear suffered at Wimbledon, and will sit at the rankings peak should Medvedev, Tsitsipas, Ruud or Carlos Alcaraz fail to reach the final.

Nadal, champion in New York in 2010, 2013, 2017 and 2019, has dangerous talent such as Denis Shapovalov, Holger Rune and Andrey Rublev in that bottom quarter.

Plenty of eyes will be on his compatriot Alcaraz. The Spanish teenager continues to amaze, chalk up milestone results and ping highlight reel shots.

The explosive 19-year-old has all the ingredients to better his 2021 last eight venture in New York. Could fellow NextGen prospect Sebastian Baez spring a shock in the first round?

Night matches in New York seem very fitting for the Alcaraz brand of tennis.

Popcorn matches from elsewhere


Kyrgios vs Kokkinakis

Goffin vs Musetti

Draper vs Ruusuvouri

Bublik vs Gaston

Carreno Busta vs Thiem

F.Cerundolo vs Murray

Edmund vs Ruud


Kenin vs Niemeier

Muguruza vs Tauson

Muchova vs Tomljanovic

V.Williams vs van Uytvanck