If you want to put an early bet on the 2017 Davis Cup, the tournament’s semi-finals aren’t until the end of the summer.
In September Australia will head to Belgium, while France will entertain Serbia in what should be a pulsating tie.
But we want to know who’s going to be strong enough, and healthy enough, to go all the way as we scan Bet365’s current outright odds for the Davis Cup.
The World Champions in 2010 are favourites this time for a simple reason: An in-form Novak Djokovic can dismantle anyone in this draw. And that hands Serbia a big advantage right away.
Djokovic has some able support in Viktor Troicki who made light work of Spain’s Carreno Busta in a straight sets win in the quarters.
The 31-year-old is having a solid season and has an admirable career Davis cup record of 23-13.
Serbia’s opponent in September may not have anyone with Djokovic’s star quality. But what they do have are seasoned pros like Mahut and Chardy who always turn it on for their country.
Right now Chardy is four matches unbeaten for France even though he’s lying down at 94 in the ATP rankings.
Famous names like Monfils and Tsonga have been relegated to the substitutes list after injury-hit seasons. But that didn’t make any difference against Great Britain in the quarters, with Lucas Pouille dispatching Kyle Edmund.
Australia have lifted the cup 28 times so you can never count them out. But as their big singles hope Nick Kyrgios battling injury this season, the Aussies might need to rely on their doubles specialists.
Kyrgios did bail them out against the United States in the quarters, beating Sam Querrey in the clincher.
But he’s not the be all and end all as John Peers is ranked number 2 in the world at doubles, while big-serving Sam Groth is a late bloomer who always has an upset up his sleeve.
Belgium are also reliant on one star:The ever-improving David Goffin. In February he achieved what no Belgian player before him could by breaking into the top ten.
The problem is that Goffin is out injured at the moment, having hurt his ankle in the French open. He has already pulled out of Wimbledon. Goffin is irreplaceable, and if he isn’t fit come September you can count Belgium out of the Davis Cup betting.
But if he does recover, expect Belgium’s odds to shorten a lot.
Steve Darcis offers some depth in the singles matches. but Belgium’s glaring weakness lies in the doubles, where Bemelmans and de Loore lie well down at 278 and 321 in the world respectively.
Betting on the 2017 Davis Cup
As we’ve seen, a single injury can dash a team’s Davis Cup dreams, so keep a close eye on the progress of Goffin and Kyrgios this summer.
Serbia’s hopes also rest on one man, and if Djokovic can stay healthy and keep improving it’s hard to see past Serbia this year.
Bet365’s outright book closes on 15th September at midnight.