ATP Toronto Day 4 Predictions Including John Isner vs Andrey Rublev

Andrey Rublev Australian Open

The first ATP Masters 1000 event of the US Open Series, in Toronto, has already seen its fair share of thrilling matches and Thursday’s action promises to produce more exciting matches. Amongst those in action on Thursday are Hubert Hurkacz, who has made the last 16 without hitting a ball, due to the withdrawal of Kei Nishikori. The Pole has a tricky first match against the always unpredictable Nikoloz Basilashvili. Elsewhere Daniil Medvedev, the favorite this week due to the absence of the “Big 3,” takes on James Duckworth, who has recorded two impressive wins this week against Taylor Fritz and Jannik Sinner. Let’s look at Thursday’s matches. We also have predictions for matches featuring Gael Monfils and Stefanos Tsitsipas.

ATP Toronto Day 4 Predictions

Nikoloz Basilashvili vs Hubert Hurkacz

Head to Head: First meeting

Hubert Hurkacz has played the best tennis of his career this season. The Pole won his first Masters 1000 event in Miami, recording wins over Andrey Rublev and Jannik Sinner en route to the title. Despite a difficult clay court season, Hurkacz bounced back well at Wimbledon, where he defeated Daniil Medvedev and Roger Federer in the second week of SW19, and reached his first Grand Slam semifinal before falling to Matteo Berretini. The Pole has an aggressive game-style that is perfectly suited to the North American hard courts. Hurkacz has not played any tennis this week, and this is something that could play into his opponents hands.

Nikoloz Basilashvili has arguably the most firepower out of any player on the ATP Tour. The Georgian is unpredictable. However, at his best he has the ability to blow away opponents, as was demonstrated in his second round victory over Alex De Minaur, when the Georgian only dropped two games. Basilashvili has had a good season on the ATP Tour and has picked up titles in Doha and Munich. However, he has struggled to have consistent success at the bigger events such as the Grand Slams and Masters 1000s.

This is a very difficult opening match for Hurkacz and I think it will be a tight three setter. However, I think the Pole has more consistency on both his ground-strokes and serve.
Prediction: Hurkacz in 3

Embed from Getty Images

Dusan Lajovic vs Casper Ruud

Head to Head: 1-0 Ruud

Casper Ruud has, without a shadow of doubt, been one of the most impressive players this season on the ATP Tour. The Norweigan recently won three titles in consecutive weeks in Bastad, Gstaad and Kitzbuhel. He also won the Geneva Open, which was held before Roland Garros. This, combined with Masters 1000 semifinal appearances in Monte Carlo and Madrid, had cemented himself as one of the best clay court players in the world. Ruud is yet to produce his clay court form on the other surfaces, but recorded an impressive hard-fought second-round win over Marin Cilic.

Dusan Lajovic enjoyed a good start to the season at the Australian Open, where he reached the fourth round before losing to Alexander Zverev. However, despite being consistent in reaching the latter stages of ATP 250 events, Lajovic has struggled this season in Masters 1000 events. He had only won one match at that level heading into this week. However, the Serb has recorded two very good wins this week against Emil Ruusuvuori and home favorite Felix Auger Aliassime. In the latter, he dealt with the pressure better and took advantage of a poor day from the Canadian.

I am giving the edge to Ruud in this match as I think he will be able to out-power Lajovic. The Serb has an attackable first serve and lacks a weapon that will consistently put Ruud on the back foot. I think the Norweigan will record a straight sets win.
Prediction: Ruud in 2

Embed from Getty Images

James Duckworth vs Daniil Medvedev

Head to Head: First Meeting

Despite not being at his best in his opening match, Daniil Medvedev took advantage of a rain delay and returned to the court a different player in his win over Alexander Bublik. Prior to the rain break, and particularly in the opening set, Medvedev struggled for accuracy on his serve and made uncharacteristic errors from the back of the court. However, from the middle of the second set onwards, the Russian found his rhythm and consistency. Bublik found it increasingly difficult to break down Medvedev’s game, and the #1 seed advanced. Medvedev reached the final at the Australian Open, but has been unable to produce his best tennis on clay and grass courts. However, he is much more at home on this surface and he will be a difficult man to beat this week.

James Duckworth came through qualifying. He has since recorded two of his best career in the main draw, against Taylor Fritz and Jannik Sinner. The Australian has played a mixture of Challenger and main Tour events this season, and has recorded some impressive wins such as victories over David Goffin in Miami and Adrian Mannarino in Stuttgart. With his ranking currently at #85, the Australian looks to establish himself as a Tour-level player.

Despite his wobble in the second round, I expect Medvedev to play much better tennis moving forward. I think that Duckworth will struggle to punch holes in the Russian’s game. I expect Medvedev to record a straight sets win.
Prediction: Medvedev in 2

Embed from Getty Images

John Isner vs Andrey Rublev

Head to Head: 2-0 Isner

This is, without doubt, the most intriguing match on Thursday’s schedule. Isner is always a difficult opponent on any surface, but on the hard courts of North America, he is particularly tough. The American suffered somewhat of a setback in 2019 when he injured his foot in Miami. At the start off this season, Isner struggled to produce his best tennis–with his best result being a quarterfinal run in Madrid, where he defeated Rublev in a tight three set match, before losing to Dominic Thiem. Isner has already shown his hard court prowess in the second half of the season, winning the title at the Atlanta Open a couple of weeks ago for the record sixth time. A second-round win over Cristian Garin has solidified his impressive form.

Rublev reached his first Masters 1000 final earlier this season in Monte Carlo, where he defeated Rafael Nadal and Casper Ruud before losing to Stefanos Tsitsipas. This season has been a mixed bag for the Russian. Highlights include winning the ATP Cup with Russia to start of the season, an ATP 500 title win in Rotterdam, and a, Olympic Gold medal in mixed Doubles with Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. However, he has struggled to replicate his impressive level at the Grand Slams, with disappointing losses at Roland Garros and Wimbledon. The Russian recorded an impressive straight sets win over Fabio Fognini in the second round, though. I think he has the game to go deep here this week.

This is a tough match to call, and I think it will go to three sets. However, I think Rublev will win due to having the better court play as well as having the more consistent game.
Prediction: Rublev in 3

Main Photo from Getty.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.