Australian Open Day 4 Predictions Including Steve Johnson vs Jannik Sinner

Jannik Sinner Australian Open 2022
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Veteran American Steve Johnson seeks an upset against Jannik Sinner in the second round of the 2022 Australian Open in Melbourne. Our panelists have predictions for every second round match including Marin Cilic and Andy Murray’s matches.

Richard Gasquet vs Botic van de Zandschulp

Damian Kust: It was a fabulous effort from the Frenchman to defeat Ugo Humbert but this should be where his run ends. Botic van de Zandschulp doesn’t seem to be slowing down at all. van de Zandschulp in 4

Harsh Bhoot: Botic van de Zandschulp is definitely a player to watch out for in the last quarter. The Dutchman is a clean striker of the ball which was evident in taking out a strong player like Struff. Gasquet has done supremely well to beat Humbert but Zandschulp’s ball striking is much cleaner. Expect the Dutchman to overpower the Frenchman. van de Zandschulp in 3

Jethro Broughton: One of the more surprising results of Round One was seeing Gasquet beat Humbert. The talented Frenchman isn’t done yet with his career and clearly feels he has more to achieve in the sport. Van de Zandschulp was too strong for Stuff, and his presence at Grand Slams just seems right after his US Open showing. This match could potentially be a cracker – Gasquet has the flair but the Dutchman is incredibly solid, while being able to hit winners when he wants to. Van de Zandschulp is the favourite for me, as he’ll be better in the longer rallies and won’t break as easily as Humbert did. Should be a fun watch. van de Zandschulp in 4

Ryan Schick: Gasquet is nearing the end of his career, and the talented Frenchman has shown plenty of signs of slowing down. His excellent backhand gives him a chance in a lot of matches if he can handle it physically and limit errors. Botic burst on the scene for many fans at the US Open with his quarterfinal run and finished the hard court season strong. The experience will give him added confidence that he can make another run at a major, and Gasquet at this point in his career will not be able to deal with his strong groundstrokes. van de Zandschulp in 3

Andrey Rublev vs Ricardas Berankis

Damian: That shouldn’t be that much of a challenge for the Russian. Andrey Rublev’s forehand will be by far the biggest shot on the court. Rublev in 3

Harsh: This can get quite ugly for Berankis. Rublev is way ahead in terms of pace generated in his groundstrokes as compared to Berankis. It’s tough to see how Berankis can trouble Rublev and it’s not as if Berankis is very adept at the net to mix things up. Expect an easy win for Rublev. Rublev in 3

Jethro: Andrey Rublev looked imperious in his first match of the season. The Russian hasn’t lost any of his trademark firepower in the off-season, and he’ll be incredibly tough for anyone bar the top 5 to beat. Berankis came through a marathon match with Carballes Baena and may be slightly low on energy for this one. Even if he was completely fresh, however, I doubt he’d even win a set against Rublev given the way he played in the first round. The World #6 will advance here. Rublev in 3

Ryan: Rublev comes in as one of the tournament favorites, especially with Djokovic out of the draw. He is the far better player, though Berankis ended 2021 on a high note with a semifinal run in Moscow. Berankis did struggle in his first match here, having to come from behind to win a close five-setter. Rublev has struggled against elite players but has an excellent record against lesser players, losing just seven games in round one against Gianluca Mager. Rublev is the far better player and will overpower Berankis to win easily. Rublev in 3

Steve Johnson vs Jannik Sinner

Damian: Jannik Sinner has the chance to be one of the contenders for the title at this point. Steve Johnson isn’t exactly in his prime anymore and won’t have much to stand up to the youngster. Sinner in 3

Harsh: Sinner should fancy a run to the quarter-finals at least after Ruud withdrew. There’s not many likely to match Sinner’s baseline prowess and hence anything short of a quarter-final would be a major opportunity wasted. Johnson has lost on both occasions they’ve met and nothing suggests that trend should stop. Sinner in 3

Jethro: I was impressed to see Steve Johnson take down Jordan Thompson in five sets. Johnson is a long way off when he was ranked just outside the top 20, and Jannik Sinner is the better player in every way. The Italian star isn’t far off being a genuine Grand Slam contender, and I can’t see him having many problems here. Sinner in 3

Ryan: Sinner is a player who has the talent to make a deep run in the draw and when he plays his best can beat anyone in the world. Johnson looked great in his comeback win against Australian Jordan Thompson after a year or two of mixed results. Johnson can possibly stay in the match with his big serve, but Sinner has many tools and is as talented as anyone on tour. Sinner will be hard for Johnson to break and he will secure the key breaks needed and win easily. Sinner in 3

Alex Molcan vs Pablo Andujar

Damian: Alex Molcan finished his match against Roman Safiullin despite heavily cramping. If he’s healthy, he’s definitely the better player on hard courts right now. Cramps usually don’t signal a worse injury, so I’ll still take him. Molcan in 4

Harsh: Molcan is another one of those who benefits greatly from a Ruud withdrawal. Andujar is by no means an easy opponent but on hard courts Molcan does possess the upper hand. Expect a see-saw battle throughout with Molcan just clinching it. Molcan in 5

Jethro: Molcan is an exciting player and one we’ll be seeing much more of. Andujar has done well to be in the Second Round considering his age and that he’s far better on clay courts. He did well to dispatch Dzumhur in straight sets but I think Molcan has too much to his game to lose this, and he should be making the Third Round on his Australian Open debut here. Molcan in 3

Ryan: This matchup faces youth against experience with Andujar near the end of his career with Molcan trying to establish himself as a solid top-100 player. Andujar is a true clay court specialist and has never made it past the second round here in his long career. Molcan also has limited experience in Australia, playing his first main draw this year. Molcan is a stronger hard court player and his age and fitness will help him in the match. Molcan in 4

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