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Is Federer worth a bet against Djoker in the 2015 US Open Final?

2015 US Open Men’s Singles Final – Sunday, September 13 at Flushing Meadows, New York

H2H record: Federer leads 21-20

Novak Djokovic (1)
$1.75 at William Hill
2015 hardcourt record: 40-4

Roger Federer (2)
$2.14 at www.CrownBet.com
2015 hardcourt record: 27-2

COULD we have asked for a better finale to the 2015 Grand Slam circuit?

One of the great rivalries in world tennis will pick up again on Sunday when Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer meet in the US Open final for just the second time.

The pair haven’t clashed in the decider at Flushing Meadows since 2007, when Federer claimed his fourth US Open crown with a straight-sets win.

That was Djokovic’s very first appearance in a major singles final, but it’s a very different story now as the world number one looks get one back on the old master.

The Serbian superstar has now reached six out of a possible nine US Open finals since that maiden berth in 2007, his only misses coming via semifinal exits in 2008, 2009 and 2014.

There was to be no repeat of last year’s disappointment, Djokovic blasting into this weekend’s title fight with a three-set demolition of defending champion Marin Cilic on Friday.

That encounter lasted just 85 minutes, and the 6-0 6-1 6-2 scoreline stands as one of the most lopsided semifinal results in Grand Slam history.

“Obviously it felt great to be able to perform as well as I did today at this stage of a tournament,” Djokovic said after the match.

“Knowing that Marin carried that [ankle] injury for last couple of matches, I didn’t allow that fact to distract me too much.

“I just wanted to concentrate on what I needed to do on the court and come out with the right intensity, make him move, get as many returns back in play.

“All in all, it was from my side a very solid match and I take that as a confidence booster for the final.”

While Djokovic eased into his fourth Grand Slam final of the year, his arch-rival made similarly light work of 2015 French Open champion Stan Wawrinka.

The highly anticipated all-Swiss semi turned out to be something of a fizzer as Federer extended his career record against Wawrinka to 17 wins from 20 starts with a 6-4 6-3 6-1 win.

It’s the first time since 2009 that Federer has made the final at the USTA National Tennis Centre – a somewhat surprising streak for a man who won no less than five consecutive US Open titles between 2004 and 2008.

“I’m very happy, it’s been a great tournament so far,” Federer said in an on-court interview after the win over Wawrinka.

“I tried very hard in the last six years to get to another final, I came close a few times and tonight it worked against Stan, who also played a good tournament.”

Sunday’s final will be the 42nd meeting between Federer and Djokovic since they first faced off at the Monte Carlo Masters back in 2006.

The Swiss has just about had the better of the match-up, with 21 wins to 20 in a rivalry which he described as “more straightforward” than his contests with the likes of Lleyton Hewitt, Andy Roddick, Rafael Nadal and Marat Safin over the years.

“It’s just a straight shootout, and I think that’s the cool thing about our rivalry,” Federer said.

“It’s very athletic, we both can handle whatever we present to one another and I think our matches [are] very even.”

Federer has yet to lose a set at US Open 2015, and another clean sheet in the final would mark the second time he has gone through a Grand Slam without dropping a single set.

The 34-year-old also achieved the feat at the 2007 Australian Open, which included a 6-2 7-5 6-3 win over Djokovic in the fourth round.

He hasn’t won a Grand Slam singles title since 2012, however, having lost to his Serbian rival in two consecutive Wimbledon finals.

But it was Federer who triumphed last time they met – just a few weeks ago in the decider of the Cincinnati Masters.

2015 US Open final betting

Regardless of the outcome, this should be a cracking final.

And with a such a close head-to-head record over the last nine years, it’s a very tough one to pick.

Djokovic is number one in the world, has reached all four Grand Slam finals this season, and looks every chance to add the US Open to his Australian Open and Wimbledon wins in 2015.

But while Federer may be getting long in the tooth, those fangs are as sharp as ever right now.

The 17-time major winner is, by his own admission, experiencing something akin to the best form of his decorated career.

While other champions may lose their edge as they drift into their mid 30s, Federer’s desire to win that 18th Grand Slam is there for all to see.

The pair have already met in five tour finals this year, with Djokovic boasting a 3-2 edge, but Federer has won two of their three encounters on hard courts.

So who will come out smiling this Sunday?

Online bookmakers have Djokovic as the favourite, although his conversion rate at Flushing Meadows (one title in five finals starts) is rather poor for a player of his stature.

Federer’s recent run in New York isn’t great, either, but we are backing the Swiss veteran to end his three-year Grand Slam drought with a big win over five sets.

Roger Federer stats and results

Age: 34
Nationality: Switzerland
Current world ranking: 2nd
Career singles titles: 87
Grand Slam wins: 17

2015 US Open results

Semifinals – defeated Stan Wawrinka 6-4 6-3 6-1

Quarterfinals – defeated Richard Gasquet 6-3 6-3 6-1

Fourth round – defeated John Isner 7-6 7-6 7-5

Third round – defeated Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-3 6-4 6-4

Second round – defeated Steve Darcis 6-1 6-2 6-1

First round – defeated Leonardo Mayer 6-1 6-2 6-2

Novak Djokovic stats and results

Age: 28
Nationality: Serbia
Current world ranking: 1st
Career singles titles: 54
Grand Slam wins: 12

2015 US Open results

Semfinals – defeated Marin Cilic 6-0 6-1 6-2

Quarterfinals – defeated Feliciano Lopez 6-1 3-6 6-3 7-6

Fourth round – defeated Roberto Bautista Agut 6-3 4-6 6-4 6-3

Third round – defeated Andreas Seppi 6-3 7-5 7-5

Second round – defeated Andreas Haider-Maurer 6-4 6-1 6-2

First round – defeated Joao Souza 6-1 6-1 6-1