Bookmakers quick to take heed of Queen’s form guide

ANDY MURRAY could start the shortest price he has ever been to win Wimbledon this year.

That is the message from Sky Bet’s content editor Tim Clement, whose firm cut the Scot from 3-1 to 11-4 second favourite in light of his recent win at Queen’s.

Murray was only shorter in the market at 9-4 in 2009 – when Rafael Nadal was absent – and Clement can see another late flood of cash coming for Britain’s world No 3.

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“I think it could be the case that we could see Andy Murray go off his shortest ever price,” said Clement.

“He has already come in from 3-1 into 11-4 as a consequence of winning Queen’s and, naturally, being British he always attracts a fair amount of support.

“And I think more so this year than last year. In losing the Wimbledon final last year, he showed his emotions which I think really endears itself to the British public and then, of course, there was winning the Olympic gold.

“We were always going to see money for him but winning Queen’s has enhanced that and he is overwhelmingly our most backed in all our markets.

“At the moment, he’s not quite as short as he was in ’09 given that in 2009 Nadal missed it though now Murray has the strength of the field around him.

“Djokovic is obviously at the height of his powers and Nadal is back in full form after winning the French Open. And Roger Federer is never to be discounted, having won it seven times.

“In terms of his ability, Murray has probably never been greater but in terms of the competition – likewise, it’s never been tougher to win Wimbledon.”

Only Novak Djokovic at 6-5 heads Murray in Sky Bet’s market with Nadal next best at 4-1 followed by Federer at 7s.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga is next at 22s followed by Juan Martin del Potro at 33s, Tomas Berdych at 40s and Clement’s quietly fancied outsider David Ferrer at 50s.

But far less open is Sky Bet’s betting for the women’s competition in which Serena Williams is red hot at 4-9.

Maria Sharapova is next best at 7-1 followed by Victoria Azarenka at 8s and Petra Kvitova at 25s but Sky Bet’s man cannot see past Williams, who is 11-4 to win Wimbledon without dropping a set. Nor can Clement see any rhyme or reason in supporting Britain’s two hopes, Laura Robson at 150s or Heather Watson at 1000-1 – other than blind patriotism.

“We did see a fair bit of support for Laura Robson after her heroics at the US Open last year but her form this year has been pretty wretched,” said Clement.

“It’s far too soon for her to win Wimbledon – she is far too inconsistent – and for Heather Watson it would be an incredible ask for her to do anything of note given that she has just come back from glandular fever. It would be very remarkable if we see either of these girls in the second week.

“Serena Williams is probably as sound a favourite as you are probably going to get as ability-wise she is head and shoulders above the rest.

“The only way really of stopping her is if she has a really bad day early on but she is certainly a worthy favourite and we have cut the price now to 11-4 for her to win without dropping a set.

“Given the way she has dominated the women’s game over the last few months, that wouldn’t be a big surprise.”