Azarenka now favourite

  • By: Tim Clement - Twitter: @SkyTimClement
  • Last Updated: January 19 2014, 10:46 GMT

Victoria Azarenka has been installed as the new favourite to win the Australian Open after Serena Williams suffered a shock fourth-round exit.

Victoria Azarenka: New favourite to win the Australian Open
Victoria Azarenka: New favourite to win the Australian Open

Ana Ivanovic upset pre-match odds of 7/1 to beat the world number one and was out to 16/1 after losing the first set before prevailing 4-6 6-3 6-3.

Reigning French Open and US Open champion Williams had been odds-on to secure a sixth title at Melbourne Park but put in a below par performance amid back problems.

Ivanovic had previously failed to take a single set off the 17-time Grand Slam champion but has now been cut from 50/1 to 8/1 (general) to triumph Down Under.

Azarenka has inherited favouritism as she looks to lift the trophy for a third successive year, while Na Li follows at 3/1 (general) as the highest seed in the top half of the draw, with no top 10 players in her path to the final.

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The 2008 champion Maria Sharapova is next in line at 7/1 (BetVictor, Coral) while Simona Halep and Agnieszka Radwanska are 22/1 (StanJames) and 33/1 (totesport, Betfred) respectively as they look to secure maiden major wins.

Ned Brooker of Sky Bet said: "We had Serena Williams as the odds-on favourite from the start and that still didn't stop the punters from backing her more than any other player.

"It was a great result for the bookmakers seeing her go out as Serena is always well fancied at any event she participates in."

  • Posted at 1045 GMT on 19/01/2014.