The veteran Frenchman has been in improved form of late, earning a new world ranking of #32. He has had a particularly solid 2019 so far, going 21-15 with 2 ATP titles. He has relatively comfortably made the 3rd round, dropping just 1 set in the process.
It hasn’t been the young Czech’s best year, falling to #124 in the world through inactivity. He has looked good at Wimbledon so far, beating both Alex Zverev and Pablo Cuevas in 4-set encounters. The grass court really does play to his strengths as a big server.
Prediction: Over 40.5 Games
We had success backing the Vesely over in his last match and I can see a similar style of match here. The odds between these two are very close and I’d expect at least 4 or 5 sets in this one. With the strong serves of both of these men, a 4-setter should eclipse this total most of the time.
Opelka had arguably the biggest win of his career last time out, a 5-set epic over Stan Wawrinka. This backs up a breakout campaign that will likely see him enter the top 50. Sporting such a large frame, you have to wonder the physical toll a 5-setter like that will take.
Raonic has rebounded nicely from a few injuries to earn the #15 seed for this tournament. He has had a relatively strong 2019 so far, going 18-7 in ATP singles matches. His path to the 3rd round has been simple, beating both Gunneswaran and Haase in straight sets.
Prediction: Raonic -1.5 Sets
Despite an impressive display last time out, I still think Opelka is the inferior player here. He won’t get a look in on Raonic’s serve and I expect him to struggle to hold up physically. It should be a relatively tight affair, but I still expect a Raonic win within 4 sets.
Probably the best all-time server named Karen, the big Russian continues to fly under the radar. At just 23 years of age, he has excelled at Grand Slams this year, earning a top 10 seed for this tournament. He has impressed at Wimbledon so far, winning two tough 4-setters to reach this stage.
Roberto Bautista Agut
As consistent as they come, the veteran Spaniard enters this tournament as the #23 seed. He has had another fantastic year on tour, going 25-11 in ATP singles matches with 1 title. He is yet to drop a set so far, comfortably winning his first 2 matches in very quick time.
Prediction: Khachanov $2.25
I thought Khachanov was undervalued against Lopez and I continue to think he is here. While he is a solid opponent, Bautista Agut’s game just isn’t suited to the grass courts like Karen’s is. I expect Khachanov’s serve to carry him here as he gets a few crucial breaks to secure a 4 or 5-set win.