US Open Day 3 Men’s Predictions Including Grigor Dimitrov vs Alexei Popyrin

Grigor Dimitrov US Open 2021
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Grigor Dimitrov, Andrey Rublev and Brandon Nakashima play their second round matches at the US Open in New York. Anish Joshi, Jack Edward, and Damian Kust offer all their predictions for second round matches.

Andrey Rublev vs Pedro Martinez

Anish: Rublev was pretty clinical in his straight-set win over Ivo Karlovic in the first round. He was highly efficient on his first serve. Pedro Martinez came back from two sets down, saving five match points to snatch a win from James Duckworth. Rublev should stop his campaign here. Rublev in 4

Jack: The only advantage I can see Pedro Martinez having over Andrey Rublev in this second-round is that the Russian might be a little undercooked after defeating Ivo Karlovic in straight sets. Rublev has been one of the best in the world this year at playing to his ranking, however – Martinez won’t have the weaponry to respond to Rublev’s ferocious ball-striking. Rublev in 3

Damian: Martinez shouldn’t be able to pose that much of a threat to Rublev on hard courts. The Russian had a polar opposite where no ground game was required basically, here he’s going to have to win everything from the baseline. Maybe it takes some adjustment, but an upset like that in best-of-five is unlikely. Rublev in 4

Grigor Dimitrov vs Alexei Popyrin

Anish: These days, Dimitrov can never be trusted. Going to a tiebreak against a guy ranked #542 is not a good prospect at all. Alexei Popyrin defeated Radu Albot in four sets in his first round encounter. It seems that he will pull off an upset here. Underestimating Dimitrov can be a very big mistake, but he compels one to think so. Popyrin in 4

Jack: Grigor Dimitrov is still a quality player – it’s very easy to forget that given the constant mountain of expectation on the Bulgarian to overdeliver. On the other hand, Alexei Popyrin’s game is getting bigger and bigger so this won’t be a simple second-round. I’m expecting a tight, high-quality match with the more experienced player coming through. Dimitrov in 5

Damian: The Bulgarian has finally found some form recently, but he shouldn’t expect an easy clash here. Popyrin has a big set of weapons to trouble him and will ask Dimitrov questions. Dimitrov in 4

Cristian Garin vs Henri Laaksonen

Anish: Christian Garin came on top against Norbert Gombos in four sets in the first round. I feel that Garin has a long way to go before he does well on hardcourts. Henri Laaksonen did very well to rise through the qualifying rounds and beat John Millman in straight sets in the first round. I think an upset looms here. Laaksonen in 5

Jack: Cristian Garin broke a five-match losing streak on hard-courts in defeating Norbert Gombos. He’s not quite found his footing on the surface and Henri Laaksonen will know this. A fast start from the Swiss could give him an unassailable lead. Laaksonen in 4

Damian: Tough call, Laaksonen run into a terrible performance from Millman in the first round, while Garin on other surfaces than clay is not exactly much of a threat. However, the Chilean has recently gotten to a level where he usually takes matches like this on hard and grass. Garin in 4

Brandon Nakashima vs Alex Molcan

Anish: Brandon Nakashima upset Big John Isner in straight sets in the first round. Beating Isner at the US Open is still a very steep challenge. Molcan has faced relatively easy match-ups till now; here is the real challenge. Nakashima should have no difficulty whatsoever in coming on top against Molcan in the second round. Nakashima in 3

Jack: Brandon Nakashima has been winning a lot of matches recently so I wasn’t particularly surprised to see him come through in straight sets against John Isner. The young American is steadily establishing himself on the main tour and, though Alex Molcan is deceptively difficult from the back of the court, he will likely be too hot to handle. Nakashima in 4

Damian: Molcan has been very impressive, but his counter-punching game isn’t quite as strong here as on clay courts. Nakashima should have enough punch and quality off the ground to win this fairly comfortably. Nakashima in 3

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