|Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York Dates: 29 August-11 September|
|Protection: Every day stay textual content and radio commentaries throughout the BBC Sport web site, app and BBC Radio 5 Reside|
American nice Serena Williams’ impending farewell to the courtroom will understandably seize a lot of the consideration when an intriguing US Open full of storylines begins on Monday.
British teenager Emma Raducanu’s defence of the ladies’s singles title is one other fascinating proposition, whereas British males’s primary Cameron Norrie tries to again up his run to the Wimbledon semi-finals with one other robust efficiency at a significant.
Spain’s Rafael Nadal has solely performed as soon as since pulling out of Wimbledon by damage, however has the prospect to increase his males’s singles report of twenty-two main titles with nearest rival Novak Djokovic not allowed to play.
The 35-year-old Serb, who’s one main title adrift, is unvaccinated towards Covid-19 and isn’t allowed to enter the USA in consequence.
Going into the ultimate Grand Slam match of the yr, BBC Sport runs by the most important speaking factors in New York.
How lengthy will Serena’s farewell final?
Just one place to begin: the tip of Serena Williams as a tennis participant.
The 23-time Grand Slam champion, who turns 41 subsequent month, says she is “evolving” away from enjoying tennis and this would be the last match of her glittering profession.
Whereas reticent to make use of the phrase ‘retirement’, that’s what the American is planning on doing. It means there’s set to be an emotional farewell on Arthur Ashe Stadium when the six-time singles champion walks off for what she anticipates would be the last time.
However when will that be? A deep run within the singles appears unlikely, and at last touchdown that record-equalling twenty fourth main title would nearly be a shock of Raducanu proportions.
Williams can also be enjoying within the ladies’s doubles alongside older sister Venus after they acquired a wildcard.
Williams has solely performed 5 singles matches this yr, together with a first-round thrashing by Raducanu in Cincinnati two weeks in the past, and faces Montenegro’s world quantity 80 Danka Kovinic in Monday’s night time session on Ashe (00:00 BST, Tuesday).
A knee damage had hampered her preparation for the Cincinnati match and pushed the first-round match towards the Briton again to Tuesday after being scheduled for Monday.
Williams did look like shifting higher in her practices at Flushing Meadows this week, however it is going to be attention-grabbing to see what stage she is at when she faces Kovinic.
|Arthur Ashe Stadium||Louis Armstrong Stadium:|
|Day session from 17:00 BST||Day session from 16:00 BST|
|Daniil Medvedev (Rus)  v Stefan Kozlov (US)||Francisco Cerundolo (Arg)  v Andy Murray (GB)|
|Leolia Jeanjean (Fra) v Coco Gauff (US) ||Simona Halep (Rom)  v Daria Snigur (Ukr)|
|Madison Keys (US)  v Dayana Yastremska (Ukr)|
|Evening session from 00:00 BST, Tues||Evening session from 00:00 BST, Tues|
|Danka Kovinic (Mno) v Serena Williams (US)||Stefanos Tsitsipas (Gre)  v Daniel Elahi Galan (Col)|
|Nick Kyrgios (Aus)  v Thanasi Kokkinakis (Aus)||Leylah Fernandez (Can)  v Oceane Dodin (Fra)|
What form is defending champion Raducanu in?
This time final yr, Raducanu was an 18-year-old novice getting ready for her first abroad Grand Slam look after battling by qualifying.
Now a family title after her beautiful victory in New York, scrutiny has been sharp because the world watches her improvement with intrigue.
Understandably, it has been a testing switch on to the WTA Tour for the teenager, whose pre-season preparation was ruined by catching Covid and hampered since by niggling accidents.
However, as we noticed in Cincinnati, the fast US arduous courts appear to deliver the very best out of the world quantity 11.
Raducanu backed up the victory towards Williams with one other beautiful win towards Victoria Azarenka, additionally a former world primary, and each performances had been paying homage to the assured, scientific model which led her to victory in New York.
There was a actuality examine within the subsequent spherical, nevertheless, when she carried out nicely however couldn’t outplay American world quantity eight Jessica Pegula.
Extra issues about her health got here at Flushing Meadows on Friday, though she insisted a wrist downside was not severe.
Raducanu, who begins on Tuesday with a tricky draw towards France’s Alize Cornet, appeared in significantly better form when she practised towards Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina on Saturday.
What concerning the different Brits?
By rating and type, it’s seventh seed Cameron Norrie who leads the British hopes.
The 26-year-old left-hander made his breakthrough at a significant with a run to the Wimbledon semi-finals and has continued his good type by reaching the Los Cabos last and Cincinnati semi-finals.
Norrie has moved into the highest eight seeds at Flushing Meadows, which implies he can not face a higher-ranked opponent till the quarter-finals ought to he get there.
Former world primary Andy Murray is outdoors the seeds after successful three of his seven matches since arriving in North America to construct up for the most important he received in thrilling model in 2012.
Dan Evans is seeded at a career-high twentieth as he appears to higher final yr’s run to the fourth spherical, whereas 20-year-old Jack Draper makes his debut in the principle draw of an abroad main after shifting to the verge of the world’s prime 50.
Former British primary Kyle Edmund is enjoying his first main singles occasion for nearly two years having been out with a knee damage, whereas 26-year-old Harriet Dart has direct entry into the draw for the primary time after cracking the world prime 100 this yr.
World primary Joe Salisbury and his American associate Rajeev Ram are the highest seeds within the males’s doubles as they appear to defend their title, whereas Neal Skupski – who has received six titles this yr alongside Dutchman Wesley Koolhof and ranked third on the earth – can also be among the many favourites.
Within the wheelchair occasions, Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid will staff up of their bid for a sixth successive US Open doubles crown, in addition to competing within the singles. Lucy Shuker competes in each ladies’s occasions, whereas two-time US Open quad singles and four-time quad doubles champion Andy Lapthorne will go for extra success.
Who’re the opposite ladies’s contenders?
World primary Iga Swiatek stays the standout participant of the season, though her dominance has light since her 37-match successful streak ended at Wimbledon.
Swiatek, 21, has received 4 of her previous eight matches and, with success on arduous courts earlier this yr, remains to be thought of the favorite.
The foremost house hope is Coco Gauff. The 18-year-old American reached her first main last when she misplaced to Swiatek at Roland Garros, and her type on the American arduous courts – quarter-final appearances in San Jose and Toronto – has been encouraging.
Gauff’s doubles associate Pegula, 28, can also be one of many in-form singles gamers on the WTA Tour. After reaching two main quarter-finals this season – plus the Madrid last, together with Miami and Toronto semi-finals – she’s going to fancy her possibilities of a deep run in her house main.
Two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep received the Toronto title earlier this month and is again into the world’s prime 10, whereas France’s Cincinnati champion Caroline Garcia and Brazil’s Beatriz Haddad Maia – who misplaced to Halep within the Canadian Open last – are available in on sizzling streaks.
Greek third seed Maria Sakkari can be hoping to go additional after reaching the semi-finals final yr, whereas Wimbledon champion Rybakina is seeded twenty fifth as a result of rating factors weren’t awarded on the All England Membership.
Can Nadal capitalise on Djokovic’s absence?
Djokovic moved inside one main title of Nadal by successful Wimbledon for a sixth time, however misses the chance to stage with the Spaniard in New York.
Nadal, 36, says it’s “very unhappy information” that his rival can not play, although it strengthens his hopes of a fifth US Open win.
The second seed has solely performed as soon as since pulling out of Wimbledon with an stomach damage, dropping to Croatia’s Borna Coric in Cincinnati, however says he’s enjoying at a “excessive stage of depth” in observe.
“I’m doing issues the easiest way that I can. I hope to be prepared for the motion,” mentioned Nadal, who performs Australia’s Rinky Hijikata in Tuesday’s night time session on Ashe.
“That is the one factor that I can say. With the instruments that I’ve at the moment, I hope to be aggressive sufficient to provide myself an opportunity.”
What concerning the different males?
Djokovic’s absence, Nadal’s disrupted preparations and an absence of latest dominance by others means the lads’s draw is pretty open.
Defending champion Daniil Medvedev is the highest seed and, whereas he often thrives on the North American arduous courts, the 26-year-old has not but hit his peak in a combined bag of type.
After lacking Wimbledon as a result of Russian gamers had been banned, Medvedev returned to win a title in Los Cabos, suffered an early exit in Montreal and was crushed within the Cincinnati semi-finals by Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas.
The draw sees a possible robust fourth-round assembly with Australia’s Nick Kyrgios, who has been one of many in-form gamers in latest months and was answerable for Medvedev’s loss in Montreal.
This season Kyrgios has appeared extra tuned in to what he should do to achieve success and fulfil his undoubted potential.
That enabled the 27-year-old to achieve his first Grand Slam last at Wimbledon, and he continued his sizzling type by successful the Washington title.
Spanish third seed Carlos Alcaraz, who reached the quarter-finals final yr, is likely one of the favourites after a shocking yr the place the 19-year-old has damaged into the world’s prime 5.
A number of of the opposite main seeds – together with Tsitsipas, Norway’s Casper Ruud, American Taylor Fritz and Spain’s Pablo Carreno Busta – may come into the equation after first rate runs not too long ago.