Who is going to make it to the quarterfinals? We are approaching the final rounds, and the best of the best will be fighting for the title. The eighth slate of this tennis DFS week has 8 matches with ATP and WTA players in action. We’ve got thoughts on Rafael Nadal and Bianca Andreescu, so let’s dive in.
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Rafael Nadal (DraftKings $10,600; FanDuel $25)
Rafael Nadal is looking unstoppable at the US Open, as he’s won all six sets with a score of 6-4 or less. Nadal is 17-2 on the hard courts in 2019 with his two losses coming against Novak Djokovic and Nick Kyrgios. He’s lost just one match since mid-May, and he’s taken down six top 10 players since that time. Nadal is the big favorite to win the title now with Djokovic out, and he pretty much has a free ride to the finals.
Nadal has a fourth round meeting with Marin Cilic, the ATP world number 23 from Croatia. Cilic has been inconsistent in 2019, with an 11-7 record on the hard courts. His serving has been absolutely terrible so far at the US Open, as he’s served 38 double faults while facing 24 break points. He lucked out in his last match against John Isner, since John converted on only one of his 14 break chances. Cilic looked bad down the stretch trying to close out the match, and Nadal will be able to take advantage of that easily. Nadal is 5-2 against Cilic on hard court, and I expect a sixth win today in straight sets.
Bianca Andreescu (DraftKings $9,800; FanDuel $21)
Bianca Andreescu is the player to beat on the WTA tour, as she is 54-7 on the hard courts over the last 12 months. Bianca has lost just two matches since the Australian Open in January, while capturing three titles since that time. She is currently riding a nine match win streak, and I don’t think anyone will be able to stop this train. Andreescu has been outstanding on the return end at the US Open. She’s converting on 14 of her 35 break chances and she is yet to drop a set. She’s winning first serve points at a 70% rate, which is good for the WTA tour’s standards.
Andreescu will go up against Taylor Townsend, the WTA world number 116 from the US. Townsend has played some excellent tennis at the US Open, winning three qualifying matches and three main draw matches. She took down the world number four, Simona Halep, in the second round while coming to the net over 100 times. Townsend loves the serve and volley tactic, and it’s found some success so far. However, she is just 1-10 against top 20 players in her career on hard courts. Bianca is playing some of the best tennis on the tour, and I think Townsend’s run ends here.
Andrey Rublev (DraftKings $8,600; FanDuel $18)
Andrey Rublev has been outstanding over the last three weeks to say the least, as he has taken out five top 25 players including two in the top 10. Rublev is 11-2 over his last 13 matches, and I don’t see this train stopping anytime soon. The 21 year old Russian is blasting through opponent’s with the speed of his shots, and he’s been able to hold serve 92% of the time. He is coming off of an impressive win over Nick Kyrgios in straight sets, and I’m sure he has all the confidence in the world to keep going.
Rublev is up against Matteo Berrettini, the ATP world number 25 from Italy. Berrettini has been one of the top players on the tour in 2019, with 37-15 record. However, he is just 13-9 on the hard courts and his serving numbers dip on this surface. He is firing aces at a 10% rate on the hard courts while holding serve 86% of the time. Matteo lost a set in each of his first three matches and he’s faced a total of 26 break points. While Berrettini’s service stats have been impressive in this tournament, Rublev is playing at an unconscious level at the moment. I expect Rublev to get the job done in the end.
Possible upset/value plays: Belinda Bencic (DraftKings $6,100; FanDuel $12)
Belina Bencic has played some outstanding hard court tennis in 2019, with a 22-7 record. Her most impressive run was in Dubai in February, where she took home the title while defeating four top 10 players in a row. Bencic is 8-5 against top 10 players in 2019, with two of those wins coming against today’s opponent. Belinda will be well rested as she got a walkover into the fourth round due to Anett Kontaveit pulling out, and she’ll need all the rest she can get for this match.
Bencic is up against a familiar opponent, the world number one, Naomi Osaka. Osaka has been solid on the hard courts since the end of Wimbledon, with a 7-2 record while making back to back quarterfinals runs. She is trying to defend her 2018 US Open title, and she’s shown that she is one of the best hard court players on the WTA tour. She’s winning 74% of first serve points in this tournament while losing serve just five times, but Bencic has her number. Belinda is 2-0 against Osaka in 2019, including a 6-3 6-1 beatdown on the hard courts in Indian Wells. Osaka plays at her best in majors, but it’s hard to ignore the head to head success for Bencic.
Best of luck!