ATP Tennis Odds, Picks: Best Bets for Friday’s Action at the Kremlin Cup and European Open (Oct. 22)
Tony O’Brien/Getty Images. Pictured: Aslan Karatsev
Quarterfinal Friday on the ATP Tour is here. Six seeds are in action throughout Europe, including Diego Schwartzman, Jannik Sinner and Karen Khachanov.
With several upsets taking place on Thursday, there are a number of intriguing matchups to keep an eye on.
Here’s how I’ll be betting the unique slate of matches.
Match times are subject to change.
Jannik Sinner (-460) vs. Arthur Rinderknech (+350)
10:20 a.m. ET, European Open
World number 65 Rinderknech may not be a household name on tour, but if he continues to hit the ball as he did against Dusan Lajovic on Wednesday, Rinderknech will soon become one.
The Frenchman put on a clinical ball-striking performance that got him by a tough opponent in Lajovic. The Serbian played far better than I projected he would and adjusted well to the fast courts of Antwerp. Nevertheless, Rinderknech utilized his power to hit through Lajovic and secure a comfortable third set victory.
Sinner had a similarly impressive performance against Lorenzo Musetti, raising his level of play against his fellow countryman who also performed better than odds indicated he would. He’ll have to play at a similar level to get by the surging Rinderknech.
If one thing is assured in this contest, it’s big hitting. Both Rinderknech and Sinner like to pressure their opponents with pace and limited time. The Italian may be better in that department, but I’m not sure there’s such a gap for the duo when meeting on a fast indoor hard court.
In fact, Rinderknech was able to upset the world number 13 on clay, so he’ll have even more confidence behind his game. Rinderknech has been serving at a relentless level, combining for 18 aces in his first two matches against a lone double fault.
A similar level on Friday would force Sinner to return very well, and if he doesn’t, there will be a number of high-leverage service games he’ll have to face.
I’m confident that will be the case, and it bodes well for a competitive effort from Rinderknech.
Pick: 0.5u Arthur Rinderknech to win a set +100 | 0.5u Arthur Rinderknech +350 via FanDuel
Aslan Karatsev (-350) vs. Gilles Simon (+240)
1 p.m. ET, Kremlin Cup
Simon has accumulated two quality wins against Laslo Djere and Mackenzie McDonald, but the 36-year-old is primed to struggle with the powerful Karatsev.
Though I’m not particularly bullish on the Russian’s indoor hard court prowess, he looked like a man on a mission against Egor Gerasimov. The Belarusian hit with depth and maintained his typically solid serving, but Karatsev was too consistent and impactful for Gerasimov to ever get real traction in the match.
Karatsev appeared to be in the best form he’s had since the Serbia Open, where he beat Novak Djokovic before falling to Matteo Berrettini in the final. The relentless nature of Karatsev’s strokes were present against Gerasimov, and anything similar against Simon will be extremely problematic for the Frenchman.
Simon’s game is predicated on consistent strokes, but against a player like Karatsev, he should have difficulty putting any pressure on his opponent in rallies. Simon simply doesn’t have the strength to contend with Karatsev from the baseline as Karatsev has the ability to expose anyone when in form.
Back Karatsev to continue his great form and excel against Simon.
Pick: Aslan Karatsev -1.5 Sets -120 via PointsBet
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