ESPN’s Outside the Lines devoted a segment Monday to investigating the possibility that the US Open draws are fixed.
Upon examining the men’s and women’s singles draws from the last 10 years at the US Open, ESPN found that the top 2 seeds had easier opponents in the first round than the they had at the other three Grand Slams.
“Not only do both of the men’s and women’s first-round U.S. Open matchups deviate significantly from true randomness, this skewed pattern was not found at the Australian Open and Wimbledon, which use a similar draw system,” the report found. “At the French Open, the difficulty of opponents for the top two women’s players during that time period was significantly more difficult than a random draw should produce, but the men were in line.”
US Open referee Brian Early was quick to deny to claim stating that the draws at all four Slams use the same procedure, same computer program for creation.
But Dr. Andrew Swift, past chairman of the American Statistical Association’s Section on Statistics in Sports and an assistant mathematics professor at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, said OTL’s analysis and its methodology were sound.
“Any way you want to look at these, there is significant evidence here that these did not come from a random draw,” he said in the report.
The USTA said that they will further look into the claim.
You can read ESPN’s full and quite thorough report here.
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