ATP Dubai Day 3 Predictions Including Roberto Bautista Agut vs Matthew Ebden

Nikoloz Basilashvili in action ahead of the ATP Dubai Tennis Championships
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There should be plenty of tennis for the fans to enjoy on day three at the ATP Dubai Tennis Championships, with 15 matches on the schedule. As always, we here at LWOT will be offering our predictions for every match on the slate, including Dominic Thiem vs Lloyd Harris and Pablo Carreno Busta vs Marton Fucsovics. But who will book their place in the round of 16?

ATP Dubai Tennis Championships Day Three Predictions

Aslan Karatsev vs Dan Evans

Head-to-head: first meeting

Aslan Karatsev has, so far, played well enough since the Australian Open to suggest that his stunning run to the semifinals in Melbourne can be a platform for him to build on. The Russian, now ranked 42nd in the world, reached the second round in Doha last week, where he took a set off top seed Dominic Thiem, and he opened his campaign at the ATP Dubai Tennis Championships with a solid 6-4 6-4 win over Egor Gerasimov of Belarus.

But he may well have his work cut out for him against Dan Evans. The Briton has played well in Dubai in the past, reaching the semifinals in 2020, and last week gave the returning Roger Federer a stern test in Doha. Perhaps more importantly, this does not look like a good matchup for Karatsev. The Russian thrives when his opponents are giving him pace to work with, but he has struggled against opponents with effective sliced backhands in the past. Evans has one of the best in the game.

Prediction: Evans in 3
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Malek Jaziri vs Dusan Lajovic

Head-to-head: Lajovic 3-0 Jaziri

Dusan Lajovic has played some fine tennis this season, notably in reaching the fourth round at the Australian Open and beating Daniil Medvedev in Rotterdam, but consistency has eluded the Serbian. He has won just one of his last four matches and was well-beaten in the first round last week by Marton Fucsovics at the ATP Qatar Open. However, he may feel confident in his chances when he takes on Malek Jaziri having won all three of their previous matches.

The Tunisian has made an indifferent start to the year and has not advanced beyond the second round at any of the tournaments he has played in 2021. He progressed to the second round in Dubai courtesy of Jo-Wilfried Tsonga’s retirement midway through the first set of their round of 64 clash. But this is clearly not a matchup he enjoys and although he has a solid record in Dubai, Lajovic has been playing well on fast hard courts of late. Expect the Serbian to prove too strong.

Prediction: Lajovic in 2
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Roberto Bautista Agut vs Matthew Ebden

Head-to-head: Bautista Agut 2-0 Ebden

Matthew Ebden may be approaching the end of his career, but the Australian proved that he can still be competitive at tour-level with an impressive run to the semifinals at the Open 13 Provence in Marseille. However, injury forced him to retire trailing 4-6 0-3 to eventual champion Medvedev and it would be a surprise if he had fully recovered from that injury in just a few days. Even if he is fully fit, it is still hard to see him getting the better of Roberto Bautista Agut.

The Spaniard is one of several players to have endured a rocky start to 2021, but he looked to be back to something approaching his best at the ATP Qatar Open where he reached the final. Defeat there at the hands of Nikoloz Basilashvili will surely have stung, particularly the manner of it, but Bautista Agut is not the sort of player to let that disrupt his next tournament. He has won both of his previous meetings with Ebden and it would be a major surprise were he to fail to make it three wins from three.

Prediction: Bautista Agut in 3
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Taylor Fritz vs Nikoloz Basilashvili

Head-to-head: Fritz 1-1 Basilashvili

When this pair met a few days ago in the semifinals at the ATP Qatar Open, it was Basilashvili who came out on top. After a close first set, which he won in a tiebreak, the Georgian was able to raise his game and stormed through the second set to wrap up a 7-6 6-1 win. It was a much-needed victory for Basilashvili, who remains under the cloud of a forthcoming trial for domestic abuse and had been in the midst of a long slump.

Taylor Fritz, in contrast, has performed solidly throughout 2021, notably coming very close to causing a seismic upset in the third round at the Australian Open against Novak Djokovic. He will doubtless be disappointed by his defeat in Doha and one imagines that it will still be on his mind when he takes on Basilashvili in Dubai. But the Georgian is hardly one of the ATP Tour’s most consistent performers and has generally struggled to back up title runs. Expect Fritz to take advantage at the ATP Dubai Tennis Championships.

Prediction: Fritz in 3

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