Target these Americans in the second round

I’m still recovering from one of the most disappointing pushes you’ll see when Jack Sock resigned in the fourth set against Diego Schwartzman on Tuesday night.

But there is no time to cry as the second round of the US Open resumes on Thursday.

Here are the two matches I have my eye on.

Note: Game times are subject to change. Read here for tips on watching US Open games.

Jenson Brooksby (-125) vs. Borna Coric (+104)

11 a.m. ET

These two players have had their moments this summer.

Borna Coric had a magical week in Cincinnati, claiming his first-ever hard court and ATP 1000 titles by beating five top 20 players. Coric not only won this event, but dominated, betting five of the six games in a row.

His level of play was surprising but let’s not forget that Coric is a former top 15 player who has struggled with injury issues throughout his career.

His opponent for that second-round match, Jenson Brooksby, stormed into his own final in Atlanta before losing to Alex de Minaur. This was a 250 only event, but Brooksby defeated Frances Tiafoe and John Isner en route to the Championship Match.

Coric is indeed seeded to get into this tournament despite playing five Challenger Tour events this year. And frankly, he didn’t live up to expectations in his first round matchup.

The Croatian struggled with Enzo Coucacaud, struggling on his second serve and converting just 6 breaks out of 14.

Coric takes a step up as he faces Brooksby on Thursday.

Brooksby will likely be fresh as a daisy after playing just over an hour on Tuesday. There’s not much to take away from this match against Dusan Lajovic, but I think Brooksby has an advantage here.

When the American is active, his groundstrokes hit points better than most. Coric made 81 unforced errors in his first-round match, which could bode badly for the future if this turns into a fight from the baseline.

Coric has an advantage on serve – especially when he serves like he did in Cincinnati – but I’m confident in Brooksby’s second leg. He is seventh on the ATP Tour on hard courts Yield Rating and 11th overall on all surfaces.

The American will have the crowd behind him too, so expect him to pull off a win.

Choose: Jenson Brooksby (-125 over fan duel) | Play to -130

Grigor Dimitrov (-150) vs. Brandon Nakashima (+122)

1:30 p.m. ET

I’m supporting another American here about Brandon Nakashima.

The 21-year-old came to the event in poor form, losing three straight games in a row and failing to produce any significant results during the hard court season.

However, he looked better in his match in the opening round of this event as he passed qualifier Pavel Kotov. He also had a strong overall season by reaching a Career best of 49 in July and earned a knockout round at Wimbledon.

Nakashima has also shown lightning at the US Open in the past. In 2021 he defeated John Isner and in 2020 he prevailed against Alexander Zverev.

Meanwhile, you never know what you’re going to get from Dimitrov, especially at a Grand Slam. He excelled in his opening round match against Steve Johnson as he didn’t have a single break point, won 92% of his first serve points and was never really in danger of dropping a set let alone the match.

At the other three Grand Slams that year, he didn’t get past the third round. He also retired from his Round of 32 game at Winston-Salem last week.

Nakashima needs to serve effectively to win this match, but I can support him because of his level-headed mindset and typically efficient game plans.

While Dimitrov has beaten the American in straight sets on clay this year, Nakashima is much more comfortable on hard courts.

Also, I’ve said that in numerous places this week, but this is such a critical event for American men’s tennis. That seems obvious, but the young players – like Nakashima – have shown incredible progress and this Grand Slam on their home turf is the real test to see how real the revival is.

This motivation also plays a role.

Choose: Brandon Nakashima (+122 via FanDuel) | Play anything plus money

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