2020 Australian Open ATP Day 8 Betting Picks & Odds: Will Kyrgios Challenge Nadal?
Photo by Wayne Taylor/Getty Images. Pictured: Rafael Nadal of Spain plays a shot
Monday features the remaining four ATP fourth-round matchups. Still, since the tournament is played in Australia, the slate kicks off at 8:15 p.m. E.T. on Sunday evening in North America — so you’ll need to get your bets in early.
Let’s examine all four of today’s matchups.
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Gael Monfils vs. Dominic Thiem (-275) | O/U: 39
- Time: 8:15 p.m. ET
- Where: Rod Laver Arena
- H2H: Thiem leads 5-0
The head-to-head history here is notably one-sided, and Monfils mysteriously withdrew before an expected quarterfinal matchup at Indian Wells last March with a late injury.
Thiem later made easy work of the Frenchman in straight sets on the clay at Roland Garros. But the Austrian hasn’t been at his best yet in his tournament, and the faster hard surface in Melbourne should help to level the playing field a bit.
Monfils will have to change his tactics over his two most recent matches, where he could comfortably counter-punch and frustrate power players.
Thiem will be happy to hit with him all day, get the better of baseline rallies and grind out a win.
Fitness is always a question for Monfils in long matches, and he was repeatedly doubled over during the end of his straight-set round three win.
Thiem is one of the fittest players on tour and the far superior strategist.
Monfils needs to be the aggressor to turn the tables in this series and advance to his second quarterfinal in Australia.
But that’s not his preferred playing style, and the Austian’s form only seems to be improving.
Theim works as a solid parlay piece, and I considered a play on the game spread.
Daniil Medvedev (-372) vs. Stan Wawrinka | O/U: 39
- Time: 11:00 p.m. ET
- Where: Margaret Court Arena
- H2H: Medvedev leads 2-0
Medvedev has gotten the better of Wawrinka in a couple of Slam matchups, most recently winning a four-setter at the US Open where the taped-up and fatigued Russian outlasted a flu-ridden Swiss.
Reportedly, Wawrinka is sick again, which could explain why he hasn’t looked at his best through the first three rounds of this tournament.
He did get some additional rest after John Isner retired in the second set of his third-round matchup. Still, Medvedev will undoubtedly put his fitness to the test and make him run all over the court by continually getting extra balls back.
Stan has the more powerful groundstrokes, but Medvedev will force him into errors and frustrate with his consistently unpredictable style.
It’s worth noting that the Russian won the fourth set 6-1 in both of their previous matchups, and I don’t think its a coincidence. He’s like a boxer who repeatedly hits you with body shots until your legs give out.
This matchup should be competitive early, but I expect Medvedev to take over in the later stages.
I parlayed Medvedev and Thiem, and also made a small play on Medvedev’s game spread.
Andrey Rublev (-111) vs. Alexander Zverev | O/U: 39.5
- Time: 2:30 a.m. ET
- Where: Melbourne Arena
- H2H: Zverev leads 3-0
The fact that Zverev has double-faulted only seven times in three matches and his dominance over an always-game Fernando Verdasco speaks to his form.
The talented German has routinely struggled with confidence, especially on his second serve, over the past year. And he has yet to truly breakthrough at a Slam.
So perhaps now that many have given up hope that he finally will, bettors who stuck with him will ultimately reap the rewards.
On pure talent, Zverev is as good as anyone in the world.
Rublev has never beaten Zverev, but he also hasn’t lost a match since October of 2019 and this should be their closest meeting yet.
Oddsmakers have set this is a pick, which I tend to agree with more than the above projection, which shows Rublev as a decent favorite.
Given the history, I couldn’t make a play. And though I expect this to be a long match and considered an over, I could see it going a variety of ways.
Chances are these two are both up for it, and playing what could be a classic match between two rising stars in the sport.
But Rublev’s legs could give out after playing 12 matches since Jan. 8, or Zverev’s confidence could melt away if the Russian’s superior return game gets him ahead early.
I would lean to Rublev, but given the history, this is not one I’m interested in betting.
Rafa Nadal (-494) vs. Nick Kyrgios | O/U: 39
- Time: 3:00 a.m. ET
- Where: Rod Laver Arena
- H2H: Nadal leads 4-3
Kyrgios looked to be ailing throughout his third-round encounter with Karen Khachanov, so fitness remains a question for him, as always.
But the Aussie looks focused and like he genuinely cares at the moment — something you can rarely say about his game — and he always relishes the chance to put one over on his biggest rival.
Kyrgios will look to dictate with his enormous power, and he’ll need to hit a lot of aces and win quick points to keep up with the Spaniard.
The atmosphere should be electric in their first head-to-head meeting in Australia. While I expect Nadal to get through and think an exact set prop (Nadal 3-1) is worth a look at around +275, the Aussie should be able to keep this one close, especially in the early stages.
Betting on Nick to win the first set (+230) was also a consideration, but I decided to lay the juice and bet Kyrgios on the set spread (+2.5) and think he’s also worth a small sprinkle on the moneyline.
Get the popcorn ready.
Bets (So Far) for Jan. 26-27
Odds swing quicker in tennis than in any other sport, so stay tuned on Twitter for my entire Tennis betting card for Jan. 26.
- Parlay (-123): Daniil Medvedev / Dominic Thiem (1 unit)
- Daniil Medvedev, -5 Games (-114, 0.5 units)
- Nick Kyrgios, +2.5 Sets (-150, 1 unit)
- Nick Kyrgios (+400, 0.25 units)