I honestly don’t know where to start with this event at times. With such a star studded field it’s incredible to think that only two seeds have ended up making the ATP Rotterdam quarterfinal round. What happens next no one knows, but what’s for sure is the top half of the draw with no seeds remaining is a great chance for several names to be in Sunday’s final.
ATP Rotterdam Quarterfinal Predictions
Jeremy Chardy vs Andrey Rublev
Head-to-head: Rublev 2-1
Jeremy Chardy’s week so far has been just like this career, up and down. After barely surviving against compatriot Humber in the first round being down match points he then backed it up against last week’s Montpellier champion David Goffin in two tiebreaks. What’s not just impressive besides the fact he got another win was the manner of the performance, he was outstanding and the best I’ve seen from the Frenchman in years. Goffin hit 20 winners in the two sets to just 11 unforced errors and ended up losing, that alone is insane to think.
It’s weird to think that Rublev is the World #8 and still only 23 years of age. For all his great results it’s always felt that he’s been heavily shadowed by fellow youngsters Zverev, Medvedev, and Tsitsipas. The Russian looked insanely impressive in a 7-5 6-2 win against former world #1 Andy Murray on Wednesday in which the Brit played a great opening set.
If both men play at the level they did in their second round match we could be in for a pure treat of aggressive baselining, short rallies and tons of winners. Right now though given he’s come off an ATP Cup win and an Australian Open quarter-final, Rublev has to be the favorite.
Prediction: Rublev in 2
Borna Coric vs Kei Nishikori
Head-to-head: Nishikori 1-0
Expect a lot of long rallies with two counterpunchers at it on an indoor hardcourt that’s more or less as slow as can be. Nishikori’s surprised a lot of people this week, beating seventh seed Auger-Aliassime in the first round and then backing it up on against the upcoming De Minaur. If anything it’s the first time in almost two years we’ve seen the Japanese look fully fit and play at a high level.
Coric on the other hand has had a friendly draw on paper up until the quarters. It wasn’t a convincing round one performance but against Serbian Lajovic on Thursday night the level from the Croatian was a huge level up and what will be required against someone of Nishikori’s calibre.
I think for someone like Nishikori who’s still getting used to making it far in ATP events and playing several matches a week, the day he had off on Thursday will be a huge help after the long match against De Minaur. For that reason alone I have a fair amount of faith in Nishikori producing a high level of tennis and taking this one.
Prediction: Nishikori in 3
Marton Fucsovics vs Tommy Paul
Head-to-head: Fucsovics 1-0
Two men not a lot of people expected to make the final eight in Rotterdam both feature in the last quarterfinal we’ll cover, and it’s a huge chance for both men. Tommy Paul has come a long way the past few years and is now close to the top 50 but despite all that he’s never made an ATP Tour level semifinal.
The problem in his way, however, is Marton Fucsovics. After an epic first round win against Opelka he breezed through Davidovich Fokina in the second round and is looking in great form. Fucsovics is the type of player which Paul may struggle the most with, he won’t give the American much to feed off on and ultimately it’s hard to see the 23 year old outplaying the now fairly experienced Hungarian off the ground for a few sets.
Prediction: Fucsovics in 2
Karen Khachanov vs Stefanos Tsitsipas
Head-to-head: Tsitsipas 2-0
Without a doubt the most interesting match of the last eight is between Khachanov and Tsitsipas. While the Russian has looked impressive in his two straight sets wins so far against Wawrinka and Norrie, the Greek was pushed more than he would have liked against 28 year old Gerasimov in the first round and then to 7-5 in the final set against Hurkacz in the second round.
The good thing for Tsitsipas is he looked great at the end of his second round match, upping his game massively when needed to break in the final game. He’s going to need more of that with Khachanov playing a similar style of tennis to Hurkacz, but if anything he’s already had the perfect preparation for the quarterfinal. I expect Khachanov to keep up his good form–which is great to see, as we haven’t seen it often in the last few years–but still think Tsitsipas will extend their head-to-head to three wins to nothing here.
Prediction: Tsitsipas in 3
Main Photo from Getty.