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ATP Gstaad Day 4 Predictions including Vit Kopriva vs Denis Shapovalov

Denis Shapovalov in action ahead of the ATP Geneva Open.

As the ATP Swiss Open in Gstaad progresses, we have seen some impressive tennis from upcoming players. Day 4 promises to be entertaining, with the top two seeds entering the fray. Eight players battle for four quarterfinal spots. Who will make the cut?

ATP Gstaad Day 4 Predictions

Casper Ruud vs Dennis Novak

Head-to-Head: Ruud 1-0 Novak

Casper Ruud, the World #14, is the classic example of a clay courter. He not only has great counterpunching skills, but also a powerful forehand that he can dominate with. Unlike many other clay-courters, he is a solid shot maker and doesn’t hesitate to attack. Ruud is coming into the tournament on the back of sensational clay season, to say the least. It started in Monte Carlo where he made the semis. After that, there was no stopping for Ruud as he won two titles and made at least the semifinals of every tournament he played on clay beside the French Open.

Dennis Novak is playing the second round of an ATP 250 after a long, long time. And though his opponent was a challenger-level player, he came up with some clever tennis. Novak is a decent competitor on clay, but — I’m not underestimating him here — Ruud is too hot to handle at the moment. The last time Ruud and Novak met was in 2018, in a challenger event; with Ruud coming on top pretty easily in straight sets. Three years hence, they meet again at an ATP Tour match, both have made progress but Ruud is still the better player. He should come on top easily.
Prediction: Ruud in 2

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Mikael Ymer vs Feliciano Lopez

Head-to-Head: first meeting

Though Feliciano Lopez was playing nowhere close to his past level in the first round, there were some moments of brilliance–excellent drop shots and passes–that reminded us of his past self. Nonetheless, he was moving awfully and reacting very late, leading to some badly messed up shots that should’ve been made. Lopez was clearly looking uncomfortable in the longer rallies. That being said, it is necessary to note that he is serving very well and came up with some innovative points at the net.

The Swede Mikael Ymer is coming off a hard-earned victory against lucky loser Enzo Coaucaud. He has wins against quality clay-courters like Roberto Carballes Baena and Gael Monfils in recent encounters. Ymer’s ability to turn the attack from defensive positions will give him the edge against Lopez, who doesn’t show interest in returning moderately difficult shots. It feels unlikely that Lopez will be able to overcome Ymer on his best surface; the reason being the contrast in fitness levels.
Prediction: Ymer in 3

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Benoit Paire vs Tallon Griekspoor

Head-to-Head: first meeting

Benoit Paire is looking fresh after a resurrection of sorts. His backhand looks splendid, he’s serving well and is making marvelous drop shots look so effortless. It can be said that Paire is stronger than ever right now, and hasn’t performed any drama on court–for which he has made himself so famous. The biggest positive for Paire is that his unique forehand fired when he needed it the most, in the second set tiebreak.

Tallon Griekspoor is in great form on clay and has three challenger titles coming in this season alone. All of the titles have come on clay. In the first round, as well as in the finals of the Amersfoort Challenger, Griekspoor showed that a small drop in the opponent’s level of play is all he needs to get ahead. Against Paire, in all likeliness he will get such openings. If he can capitalize on such moments, there are chances that he can get the better of Paire.

All the same, Paire is looking a lot better right now and there is hardly any chance that he will lose to a rookie. He has to keep his cool in the tough moments and not let a few errors spoil his whole game. Paire is  the better player here, but Griekspoor will not give up without a fight. This will be the closest encounter today.
Prediction: Paire in 3

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Denis Shapovalov vs Vit Kopriva

Head-to-Head: first meeting

Vit Kopriva is is a 24 year old from the Czech Republic, who likes to strike the ball very hard and makes use of his power to pound winners from the baseline. His annihilation of Johan Nikles in the first round made Kopriva look like an established veteran; whereas in reality it was his main draw debut in a Tour-level match. Kopriva has a solid baseline game and an aggressive game style. Though he prefers to dominate from behind, he can finish points at the net and uses drop shots effectively.

Having said that, we cannot ignore the fact that Denis Shapovalov is currently in exceptional form. He is touted to be one the next-gen greats, and rightly so; having performed brilliantly at each and every big tournament since the Rome masters. Shapovalov has a game suited to all surfaces but his snappy shots aren’t as effective on clay as on grass. It doesn’t seem like anyone can stop Shapovalov at the moment — at least not in the first round at an ATP 250. He has negligible weak links in his game that are not at all likely to be exposed by a player ranked outside the 200. Shapovalov should easily overcome anything Kopriva throws his way.
Prediction: Shapovalov in 2

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