Serena Williams' Odds to Win US Open Jump to 14-1 After Win vs. Anett Kontaveit

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 1, 2022

NEW YORK, USA, August 31:    Serena Williams of the United States in action against Anett Kontaveit of Estonia on Arthur Ashe Stadium in the Women's Singles second round match during the US Open Tennis Championship 2022 at the USTA National Tennis Centre on August 31st 2022 in Flushing, Queens, New York City.  (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images

Even the oddsmakers are starting to believe in Serena Williams.

After the 23-time Grand Slam winner opened the 2022 U.S. Open at 50-1 odds, she's dropped all the way to 14-1 after her victory over second-seeded Anett Kontaveit.

"It's extremely unique to have such a sports icon at long odds you would never have gotten in their prime," Caesars Sportsbook vice president of trading Craig Mucklow told ESPN's Doug Kezirian. "This is a great story, and the longer the run continues, the more action we'll see backing Serena, for sure."

Williams entered her second-round match as a heavy underdog but looked spry as she earned a 7-6 (4), 2-6, 6-2 win over Kontaveit, who entered Flushing Meadows as the world No. 2. She will face off against Ajla Tomljanović in the third round and opened as a -170 favorite at DraftKings Sportsbook.

The 40-year-old great announced her pending retirement from tennis in a first-person essay published in Vogue. While Williams admitted she didn't want to walk away from tennis—she noted she would never have to make such a choice if she were a man—her desire to expand her family has taken priority over her dreams on the court.

"I never wanted to have to choose between tennis and a family. I don't think it’s fair," Williams wrote. "If I were a guy, I wouldn't be writing this because I'd be out there playing and winning while my wife was doing the physical labor of expanding our family. Maybe I'd be more of a Tom Brady if I had that opportunity."

Williams had largely looked like a shell of her past self in three tournaments before the U.S. Open. She was ousted in the first round at Wimbledon and the Western & Southern Open; her only win this year before this week came against Nuria Párrizas Díaz, the No. 62 player in the world.

Tomljanović has never faced Williams in a head-to-head matchup.