The third round of the 2022 ATP National Bank Open in Montreal is simply full of smashing matchups. In most games it’s just extremely difficult to predict the winner. We also predict the rest of the day’s games in a separate article. Who do you think will prevail?
ATP Montreal day 4 predictions
Tommy Paul vs. Marin Cilic
Head to head: Cilic 2-0
Thomas Paul saved a match point to knock second seed Carlos Alcaraz out of the tournament on Wednesday. The American is eyeing a big hard-court season but was unlucky to lure Nick Kyrgios off the bat in Washington. Meanwhile, this is Marin Cilic’s first tournament since being forced to withdraw from Wimbledon due to COVID-19. So far he has managed to defeat Borna Coric and Karen Khachanov in two identical 6-3, 6-2 results. It was a show of strength and although Paul’s footwork and vast ability from the ground can put pressure on him, it is the Croatian who has the higher ceiling and should dictate the procedure.
Prediction: Cilic in 3
Jannik Sinner versus Pablo Carreno Busta
Head to head: 1-1
The pair previously faced Pablo Carreno Busta in 2022, who missed match points in two separate sets (five total) in Miami. Jannik Sinner has been pretty amazing lately, reaching the quarterfinals Wimbledon and winning the title in Umag. However, his first match here was a bit of a mess as he struggled to beat the always tricky Adrian Mannarino. He will likely improve as the week progresses and shake off the turf. However, Pablo Carreno Busta has already proven on hard courts that he is not far behind the Italian and completely dismantled his first two opponents. And they were no wimps – Matteo Berrettini and Holger Rune.
Prognosis: Carreno Busta in the 3rd
Casper Ruud vs. Roberto Bautista Agut
Head to head: Bautista Agut 2-0
Roberto Bautista Agut goes into this match on a six-game win streak, but the quality of the opposition he faces will be boosted by quite a bit. The Spaniard has been producing the goods mostly at ATP 250 events this year and is still waiting for a bigger run. He also defeated Casper Ruud in their only hard court meeting at the ATP Cup in early 2022. The Norwegian has done a very good job improving his hard court game and the topspin forehand can be a force on a good day. This will be his best chance yet to defeat Bautista Agut.
Prediction: Ruud in 3
Nick Kyrgios vs Alex de Minaur
Head to head: First date
This was debatable until recently, but it’s now pretty clear that this has been the best (and most importantly, most consistent) season Nick Kyrgios has had on tour. The Aussie is at a paltry 29-7 for the year, with eight of those wins coming in the last week and a half. That includes a second-round win over world No. 1 Daniil Medvedev, another incredible feat in a year full of such players. Alex de Minaur can bring it to Kyrgios with his still-improving serve and incredible stride speed, especially as the 27-year-old begins to feel the accumulated fatigue from his Washington run. Going up against Kyrgios in this form is an idea, but I’m not a fan of it.
Prediction: Kyrgios in 3
Main photo by Getty.