Lorenzo Sonego vs. Oscar Otte Australian Open Odds, Preview & Best Bet (Jan. 18)
Kelly Barnes/Getty. Oscar Otte hits a backhand at the Adelaide International tournament.
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Lorenzo Sonego vs. Oscar Otte
|Time||7 p.m. ET|
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In a rematch of the US Open first round, Oscar Otte and Lorenzo Sonego will face off with a third-round spot in the Australian Open on the line.
The German came through a first round matchup with Chun Hsin Tseng while the Italian got past American Sam Querrey, with neither dropping a set in their first matches of the tournament.
When the two played in New York, there were some interesting stats despite the relative dominance that each player tends to enjoy on serve. Sonego served right at his season-long hard court first serve percentage at 66%, while Otte was just under his season percentage at 58%, but 16 double faults hit with just 21 aces created pressurized service games and 11 breaks of serve.
Ultimately, Otte came through in four tiebreak sets, but it was tight all the way through, and it’s not hard to foresee something similar happening in Melbourne.
Sonego and Otte both have hard court Elo ratings that are within 30 points of each other, and the two come into the match in somewhat similar form, as Sonego went 2-1 in his run-up tournaments while Otte went 1-2.
Otte certainly finished his 2021 season in stronger fashion, winning three Challenger titles. Sonego didn’t get past a quarterfinal in any tournament after the US Open, albeit on the ATP Tour.
Against Tseng, there were some reasons for Otte to be encouraged. But there was also cause for concern. His 82% win rate behind his first serve was balanced by a 44% win rate behind his second serve. Otte was efficient on return, limiting Tseng to 56% of his first serve points, but he wasn’t able to capitalize as much on return of second serve, winning 51% of those points.
Sonego won 71% of both his first and second serve points against Querrey, but he was fortunate to save all nine of the break points that he faced. It’s highly unlikely that he could be as fortunate against a quality returner in Otte.
While Sonego enters the match as a solid favorite, I believe this is a match that will be decided on thin margins.
We saw it when the two faced off in New York, but a key point in each direction in big moments, such as break chances or in a tiebreaker, can heavily impact the complexion of the match.
In situations like that, the value shifts towards the player who is getting the better price, which in this case is Otte. At +220 and +105 on the set spread, he’s being valued as if he didn’t just get past Sonego in New York and hasn’t been thriving on hard courts since the grass court season passed in 2021.
Sonego is an incredibly talented player, but he can also be errant at times, and he’ll have to display patience in breaking down Otte’s serve if he wants to get through. That’s something that provides trouble for Sonego at times, and Otte is going to be fully aware of that.
If he can get a feel for the ball early, Otte is going to pick up confidence and become an extremely tough player to break down, so at these numbers, he’s a worthwhile play.
Pick: Oscar Otte +1.5 Sets (+105) (0.5u) | Oscar Otte +220 (0.5u)
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