BNP Paribas Open Final Pick: Cameron Norrie vs. Nikoloz Basilashvili Betting Preview (Oct. 17)
Cameron Norrie vs. Nikoloz Basilashvili
|Time||Sunday, 7:00 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM|
After a thrilling week-and-a-half that has featured a number of upsets, drama-filled matches and emotion, Cameron Norrie will take on Nikoloz Basilashvili for the Indian Wells crown.
It’s not the final that anyone projected — Norrie opened the tournament at 66-1 and Basilashvili at 100-1 per Bet365 — but it’s certainly an enticing one.
Each player utilizes a completely different style, making for a stylistic matchup that should offer an interesting storyline to follow. Norrie plays a balanced game that relies on consistency and steady heaviness, while Basilashvili plays a power style of tennis that keys in on massive groundstrokes and an offensive mentality.
Nikoloz Basilashvili defeats Taylor Fritz 7-6(5) 6-3 to reach his first Masters 1000 final at #BNPPO21 pic.twitter.com/NfPZ2psnwv
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) October 17, 2021
When the two players are in-form, as they are now, watching them play is a great example of how you can experience success in tennis using wholly different methods.
Norrie, who achieved a new status of British number one thanks to his efforts in Indian Wells, enters the match after two successive near-flawless matches. He put on a phenomenal hitting display against Diego Schwartzman before doing the same against Grigor Dimitrov. Norrie showed little vulnerability against both players and displayed why he’s come so far in 2021.
A fierce competitor who entered the year as a gritty defensive player, Norrie has become an all-around player with the ability to battle on all surfaces and against all styles of player. He fought well against Rafa Nadal on clay and against Roger Federer on grass this year, so peaking in this hard court period is a well-deserved cherry on top.
April 2019: Norrie d. Mannarino for his first-ever Masters 1000 win
October 2021: Norrie d. Dimitrov to reach his first-ever Masters 1000 final
Reaping the rewards of hard work 🙏 @cam_norrie pic.twitter.com/hOIoQA2epV
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) October 16, 2021
As I’ve mentioned throughout the week, Basilashvili is a form-based player. To an extent, you could say that about every player on tour, but it’s as true for the Georgian as it is for anyone. The world number 36 is a ridiculous ball-striker when firing, but he can completely unwind when not playing well.
Two ATP titles on the year have been countered by 10 first-round losses, but a victory in Indian Wells would be a career-defining moment, let alone a key moment of his season.
A prime example of Basilashvili’s ups and downs on tour comes in evaluating his lone prior match with Norrie. The former TCU player only dropped three games to Basilashvili, who was out of sorts in a March meeting in Rotterdam. Norrie came into the match as a heavy favorite (in the range of -250), and he delivered on that number.
This match is poised to be much different, as Norrie and Basilashvili both have elevated their games from that point in the season to a drastic extent, and neither has ever played as well as they have in this tournament.
With that in mind, this contest feels like it should be far closer to a pick ’em rather than a match with a -190 favorite. Despite the level that Norrie has displayed, he hasn’t run into anyone that has the weapons that this version of Basilashvili has.
Because of that, it’s absolutely worth playing Basilashvili at a number this high. In a 50-50 contest, +160 is quite the deal.
Pick: Nikoloz Basilashvili +160 via BetMGM
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