Day 4 of the ATP Murray River Open is here! It’s been an exciting week of tennis in Melbourne, but we still have a lot of great tennis to come! Who will win and who will come up short? I give my best guesses here! I’m predicting all eight matches, four in this article and four in a second article.
Editor’s Note: All play on Thursday has been postponed due to a positive COVID test by a hotel employee. We are offering predictions for the matches originally scheduled for Thursday under the assumption they will be played Friday or a later date. We will update this post as necessary if the situation changes.
ATP Murray River Open Day 4 Predictions
Marcos Giron vs Dan Evans
Head to Head: never played
Marcos Giron won another match in straight sets, taking out Adrian Mannarino in the second round of the Murray River Open. While Mannarino wasn’t at his best, Giron was striking the ball so cleanly during that match. Dan Evans went down a break early, then didn’t look back as he took out Pedro Sousa in two sets.
These two have never played before. Giron did well to deal with Mannarino’s flat shots, can he handle the slices and angles that Evans brings to the table? That’s the question here. Dating back to last season, Giron has won 10 of his last 12 matches and is very confident. But, I just think that Evans manipulates the ball around the court so well and is going to make Giron very uncomfortable out there. It’s been a great a run for the American, but Evans moves on.
Prediction: Evans in 2
James Duckworth vs Corentin Moutet
Head to Head: never played
James Duckworth has now beaten Tomas Machac and Ugo Humbert in straight sets to start this tournament. He’s serving very well. Against Humbert, he wasn’t broken and won over 70% of both his first and second serve points. Corentin Moutet beat Albert Ramos in straight sets after taking out Frances Tiafoe in the first round. Moutet’s first serve is packing a punch, winning 83% of his first serve points.
These two have never played before. Duckworth has had a couple of very impressive wins, but I’m still not convinced he can sustain this over time. Moutet, in addition to his excellent variety, is so fast and consistent from the baseline. He’s not going to make it easy on Duckworth. I think Moutet forces Duckworth to go for a little too much at times and ultimately the Aussie cracks. Moutet advances to the round of 16.
Prediction: Moutet in 3
Egor Gerasimov vs Felix Auger-Aliassime
Head to Head: 3-0 Auger-Aliassime
Egor Gerasimov picked up a touigh win over the tough-customer Marton Fucsovics. Gerasimov did well to recover from a rough second set that he lost 1-6 to find his again for a 6-3 1-6 6-3 victory. Felix Auger-Aliassime’s first serve was firing. He won 87% of his first serve points. Auger-Aliassime wasn’t broken during the match.
Auger-Aliassime leads the head to head 3-0, all on hard courts. The most recent matches was post-hiatus in Cologne, where Auger-Aliassime won in a third-set tiebreak. This will be a serve-centric match, as both players rely on their serves for free points. However, when in rallies, both like to control the baseline and be in charge of points. I trust Auger-Aliassime’s game to hold up a little bit more. He should serve a little better and is a little more steady from the baseline. Auger-Aliassime moves on.
Prediction: Auger-Aliassime in 3
Borna Coric vs Nick Kyrgios
Head to Head: tied 2-2
Borna Coric played a very solid match to get a straight sets win over Emil Ruusuvuori in his first match of the season,. Coric returned well, breaking the huge Ruusuvuori serve three times. Nick Kyrgios also won in straight sets against Harry Bourchier. Kyrgios had to save three sets points in the second set.
The head to head is tied 2-2. These two have a history and this match could get tense. Kyrgios will be looking to serve huge and blast Coric off the court, while Coric will be trying to fend off Kyrgios’ powerful serve and get him into longer baseline rallies. Coric played a really good match to beat Ruusuvuori and I’m not 100% confident in Kyrgios’ game yet. Coric gets the win.
Prediction: Coric in 3
Main Photo from Getty.