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ATP Acapulco Quarterfinal Predictions Including Casper Ruud vs Ben Shelton

Casper Ruud ATP

It’s quarterfinal day at the ATP Mexican Open in Acapulco. This means that the remaining eight players in the tournament can start to see the finish line. Four intriguing matches are scheduled on Thursday night, including Casper Ruud’s third career meeting with Ben Shelton. Who will reach the semifinal in Acapulco?

ATP Acapulco Quarterfinal Predictions

Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Alex de Minaur

Head-to-head: Tsitsipas 9-0 de Minaur

Stefanos Tsitsipas made it his mission to return to the elite of men’s tennis. He has only stayed outside the Top 10 for a few weeks and will take his spot back into the upper tier after toppling Italy’s Flavio Cobolli (currently 10th in the live ranking). Alex de Minaur, meanwhile, extended his winning streak in Acapulco to seven matches dating back to last year’s title win. He cruised past Austria’s Sebastian Ofner 6-1 6-3.

The head-to-head makes for dismal reading if you’re a fan of the Aussie. He has yet to taste success against Tsitsipas in nine tour-level matches. But we cannot understate the improvements De Minaur has incorporated in his game in the last 12 months, which, in truth, coincided with Tsitsipas’ slump. The defending champion might not get a better chance to arrest that appalling record, which is why he is very likely to pounce on the 10th try.
Prediction: de Minaur in 3

Miomir Kecmanovic vs Jack Draper

Head-to-head: Draper 2-1 Kecmanovic

These two played a marathon in Adelaide at the start of the season, with Draper fending off match points to win 5-7 7-6 7-6. But it doesn’t look like we’ll get more of the same here, at least in terms of court time. The Briton has been shrinking the dimensions of the court with his muscular groundstrokes. Limiting his opponent’s time and space has enabled him to take command of baseline rallies. He has dropped seven games in two matches, beating Tommy Paul and Yoshihitio Nishioka with ease. The same cannot be said of Kecmanovic, who needed three sets to beat an out-of-form Diego Schwartzman, although he played close to his best tennis against Daniel Altmaier. Still, Draper is the player with the higher ceiling between them and the favorite in this contest.
Prediction: Draper in 2

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Holger Rune vs Dominik Koepfer

Head-to-head: first meeting

For the second straight match, Dominik Koepfer overcame a second-set blip before blowing away his opponent in third. He has clinched deciding sets over Terenace Atmane (6-0) and Frances Tiafoe (6-1). So, clearly, when the matches go down the stretch, he is surprisingly energetic. But Holger Rune is a transformed man since rehiring Patrick Mouratolgou. Granted, it is only their first tournament together in their second stint, but the Dane has regained some swagger in his step and is playing with freedom. His accuracy off the ground has also been excellent, and he’ll need that in constant supply against a very tough counterpuncher.
Prediction: Rune in 3

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Casper Ruud vs Ben Shelton

Head-to-head: Ruud 1-1 Shelton

In two matches in Acapulco, Casper Ruud has only faced one break point. He is assured of rejoining the Top 10 at the end of this tournament thanks to his straight-sets win over Dusan Lajovic in the second round. Ben Shelton, for his part, emulated his father, Bryan, in reaching the Mexican Open quarterfinal with another gusty three-set win.

This year’s Mexican swing has been very productive for Ruud, who has won five of his last six matches. In that time span, the Norwegian adapted to playing different opponents and handled pressure situations quite well. Shelton is still capable of breaching through his defenses, though, and brings a touch of variation in his baseline game. Whether that will unsettle an in-form Ruud is doubtful on the evidence of their performances this week.
Prediction: Ruud in 3

Main Photo Credit: Susan Mullane-USA TODAY Sports


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