- Murray and Norrie look strong
- Boulter and Burrage in first main-draw wins
- Top seeds progress
Andy Murray was among six British players to triumph in their opening matches at the US Open, making it a fantastic day for the nation. In an engaging match, Murray stayed focused against the fiery Frenchman Corentin Moutet, winning 6-2, 7-5, 6-3.
Katie Boulter and Jodie Burrage both celebrated their first main-draw victories in New York. Cameron Norrie, Dan Evans, and Jack Draper also emerged victorious, all progressing without surrendering a set.
Boulter gets the ball rolling
The winning streak kicked off with Boulter, 27, securing a 6-4, 6-0 triumph over France’s Diane Parry. Norrie, seeded 16th, followed with a commanding 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 win against Russia’s Alexander Shevchenko.
Former world number one Murray then overcame Moutet’s challenge, and Draper defeated Moldova’s Radu Albot 6-1, 6-4, 6-3. Dan Evans clinched a 6-4, 6-2, 7-5 victory against Colombia’s Daniel Elahi Galan.
Burrage capped off a successful day for British tennis. The sport had faced questions, particularly on the women’s side, about its depth at the highest level. Burrage secured a 6-3, 6-4 win against Russia’s Anna Blinkova.
Qualifier Lily Miyazaki also advanced to the second round with a straight-set victory, marking her first major win.
Murray claims 200th Grand Slam singles win
Murray displayed his extensive experience, overcoming a challenging match against the 72nd-ranked Moutet. Dealing with an abdominal injury, Murray entered the Grand Slam event with limited court time. Despite physical and mental challenges, he maintained composure.
Murray’s ability to anticipate Moutet’s varying play patterns proved key. Moutet’s frustration led to racquet destruction and symbolic gestures of frustration. In an action-packed encounter, Murray clinched victory in just under three hours, marking his 200th Grand Slam singles win.
Murray will face Bulgarian 19th seed Grigor Dimitrov in the second round. Boulter, who achieved a career-high ranking of 60th, will compete against Wang Yafan after the Chinese player surprised French seventh seed Caroline Garcia.
Burrage’s climb to the top 100 was a result of her Nottingham final appearance and her first Grand Slam main draw win at Wimbledon. Despite recent defeats, Norrie’s confidence remained unwavering. He defeated Shevchenko and will face Taiwanese qualifier Hsu Yu-hsiou in the next round.
Draper’s progress was hindered by a shoulder injury, but he managed a convincing win against Albot. Now, he is set to face Polish 17th seed Hubert Hurkacz.
British men’s number two, Dan Evans, secured a routine victory and is set to play against Dutchman Botic van de Zandschulp in the next round.
Good start for favourites in both Men’s and Women’s singles
The top three seeds in the men’s draw all made it through comfortably. Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev both came through in straight sets while defending champion Carlos Alcaraz, having won the first set, went through via walkover when his opponent, Dominik Koepfer, retired with an ankle injury.
World number one Iga Swaitek comfortably progressed to the second round in the women’s draw. Aryna Sabalenka, Jessica Pegula, Elena Rybakina, Ons Jabeur, Coco Gauff and Caroline Garcia have all progressed.
Bettors can note how easily or otherwise the favourites progressed. It is also important to be aware of who plays well on this surface. As with Wimbledon, bettors need to be aware of players such as Murray, who haven’t played enough recent tennis to be seeded due to injuries, can cause problems for seeded players. Murray could be one to watch if his fitness holds up. The Scotsman has regularly performed well at Flushing Meadows throughout his stellar career.
Apart from Murray, punters looking to back British players could look at Norrie, who clearly has the quality, and has threatened to go deep into Grand Slams in recent times, reaching the semi-final at Wimbledon last year. He reached the 4th round at Flushing Meadows in 2022. Boulter, having overcome injury problems, is possibly a better player than her world ranking suggests.