Australian Open Day 6 Predictions Including Andrey Rublev vs Marin Cilic

Andrey Rublev Australian Open 2022
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Jannik Sinner is likely to be tested by the in-form Taro Daniel in round 3 of the Australian Open, while Marin Cilic looks to upset Andrey Rublev. Our panelists offer their predictions for every day 6 match including Daniil Medvedev and Taylor Fritz’s third round matches.

Taro Daniel vs Jannik Sinner

Jack Edward: Taro Daniel is playing better than his ranking suggests for certain, beating Andy Murray convincingly with some spot-serving and stubborn rally temperament. Consider Jannik Sinner one of the top-five favourites to win the title however. His performance so far has been electric and it’s difficult to see anyone beating him without a big weapon in their game – his last opponent, Steve Johnson, served pretty well against him but it took a few fleeting dips in his level for him to go down in straight sets. Sinner in 3

Damian Kust: There is no question to me that Taro Daniel is playing the best tennis of his life right now. The Japanese player has massively improved his serve during the off-season and for someone with his baseline game, that can really mean the world of difference. Still, this is likely too much of a step up in difficulty. Jannik Sinner is a genuine title contender. If he holds up mentally, he’s got all the tools required to break through Daniel in the baseline rallies. Sinner in 4

Jakub Bobro: The Japanese qualifier is looking good in Melbourne, yet to drop a set in his five matches there, including a win over five-time finalist Andy Murray. I expect 20-year-old Jannik Sinner to end his Melbourne run as the Italian is 5-0 on the year and hasn’t dropped a set yet. Sinner beat Joao Sousa and Steve Johnson in his first two matches and though Daniel should be more of a test, Sinner should pass with flying colors. Sinner in 4

Benoit Paire vs Stefanos Tsitsipas

Jack: When Benoit Paire is on, he’s on. I’m convinced his last match was more a matter of Dimitrov’s performance than his, however. It looks as though Stefanos Tsitsipas has recovered from his recent surgery and has played himself into form beating Sebastian Baez. His base-level is too high to be beaten by Paire at the moment, though he could be troubled for a while. Tsitsipas in 4

Damian: Benoit Paire remains one of the more puzzling competitors on the circuit, entering the third round despite heavily struggling pretty much since the pandemic. Stefanos Tsitsipas hasn’t been outstanding so far and if the Frenchman can perform up to his best, he’s got a fighting chance. The best-of-five format has to favor the number four seed though, especially as he won’t go down beyond a certain level. Paire can go from peaking to barely keeping the ball in the court in a matter of games and that could be difficult to sustain over a long distance and against an opponent of this class. Tsitsipas in 4

Jakub: Paire has been a pleasant surprise in Melbourne so far. Whether the Frenchman will give his full effort in a match is pretty much a coin flip these days and he has looked particularly good in his second-round win over Grigor Dimitrov. His next opponent, Stefanos Tsitsipas, has been quite good in wins over Mikael Ymer and Sebastian Baez. Tsitsipas leads the head-to-head 3-1 and has been dominant in their past two meetings but if Paire brings his best, this will be a stunning match to watch. Tsitsipas in 4

Andrey Rublev vs Marin Cilic

Jack: This one could be a cracker. Andrey Rublev obviously stole the blueprints to Marin Cilic’s game as a junior and it’ll stand him in fair stead here. The world #6 appears to be in blistering form, sporting a bigger, better version of the Croat’s game at the moment. The peaks of both their games are terrifyingly high but history would suggest Rublev’s game should crunch the hardest for the longest. Rublev in 4

Damian: Both players look somewhat rejuvenated in the early days of the 2022 season. Andrey Rublev had the stronger performances so far and is hitting his forehand exactly as he was in his best days. A slight degree of uncertainty regarding the Russian remains because he hasn’t been properly tested so far. This is a power-oriented matchup and while both can absolutely blast the ball, Rublev does it more consistently and is less likely to not be up to the challenge mentally.
Rublev in 4

Jakub: Rublev has been ruthless in his first two matches, dropping just 13 games against Gianluca Mager and Ricardas Berankis. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Russian continue his rampage against 2018 finalist Marin Cilic. Rublev leads the head-to-head 4-1 and has won all of their meetings since 2019. Cilic might be able to keep the sets closed, but Rublev is just a superior baseline player at this point in their careers. Rublev in 3

Christopher O’Connell vs Maxime Cressy

Jack: Though Maxime Cressy’s game should be perfect for rushing a one-handed backhand return, O’Connell’s backhand appears to be a very natural shot for him with plenty of dip on it. At the same time, in the mood he’s in, Cressy could take winning or losing the match completely out of O’Connell’s hands. I called him to get to the fourth round at the start of the tournament – I’ll stick to my guns. Cressy in 3

Damian: Maxime Cressy’s breakout month continues with a maiden Grand Slam third round. The massive delivery and serve-and-volley game were all there before, but the American is now a much steadier baseliner. His return has been excellent too, allowing him to keep breaking new barriers. If Cressy can keep this up, he’s a much better player than Christopher O’Connell right now. How he handles the opportunity? The huge 2nd serve tends to break down under pressure, but let’s not forget that for the Australian, this is also a huge one and he’ll be feeling a lot of the same nervousness. Cressy in 4

Jakub: Wildcard Christopher O’Connell pulled off an upset over 13th seed Diego Schwartzman to make his first third-round at a slam of his career. Cressy is in the same situation after wins over John Isner and Tomas Machac, though the American’s great form in the warm-up events make this less of a surprise. The fast conditions in Melbourne really suit Cressy’s serve-and-volley game and he has a great opportunity here to extend his run. Cressy in 4

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