2016 US Open: Favorites and dark horses – Metro US

2016 US Open: Favorites and dark horses

Novak Djokovic the final Big Four man standing as US Open reaches semis
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The 2016 US Open tennis tournament begins Monday in Queens with a full slate of action. Here’s a look at the favorites and darkhorses.

Men’s singles

Favorites: Novak Djokovic (No. 1 seed)

The defending US Open champ is battling a left wrist injury as he attempts to capture his 13th Major championship and third Grand Slam title of 2016.

“Well, the wrist hasn’t been in ideal start for the last three and a half weeks, but I’m doing everything in my power with obviously the medical team to make sure that I’m as close to 100 percent as possible,” Djokovic said.

Andy Murray (No. 2 seed)

Fresh off winning both Wimbledon and his second straight Olympic gold medal, Murray could claim to have enjoyed a better year than Djokovic if he captures the title in Flushing Meadows.

“Murray is undoubtedly playing the best tennis of his career, he’ll feel he can win this tournament,” said ESPN analyst Jason Goodall.

Dark horses:Rafael Nadal (No. 4 seed)

The Spaniard has won twice here (2010 and ’13), but hasn’t captured a Grand Slam title since winning Roland Garros in 2014. He could face Djokovic in the semifinals.

Milos Raonic (No. 5 seed)

The Wimbledon runner-up to Murray, Raonic has a huge serve and massive forehand.

Marin Cilic (No. 7 seed)

The 2014 US Open champ is coming off a victory over Murray in the Cincinnati final, snapping the Scot’s 22-match winning streak. He could face Djokovic in the quarters.

Juan Martin del Potro (Unseeded)

The 2009 US Open champ received a wildcard after taking out Djokovic and Nadal en route to the silver medal at the Olympics.

Women’s singles

Favorite: Serena Williams (No. 1 seed)

Stunned by Italian Roberta Vinci in the semifinals a year ago while en route to the calendar year Grand Slam, Serena is battling a shoulder injury but should be highly motivated to win her seventh US Open and 23rd career Major title.

“I’m starting to feel better now, and that’s really positive,” she said of her shoulder.

Dark horses: Angelique Kerber (No. 2 seed)

The 28-year German left-hander stunned Serena in three sets to win her first major title at the Australian Open in January.

“Let’s see how Serena will play here,” she said. “Let’s see how the others will play.”

Madison Keys (No. 8 seed)

The 2015 Australian Open semifinalist has the power and poise to make a deep run.

Follow Adam Zagoria on Twitter @AdamZagoria for updates throughout the U.S. Open.