Pablo Carreno-Busta vs Lorenzo Sonego ATP Picks Against the Spread - 6/28/2019
Pablo Carreno-Busta vs Lorenzo Sonego
7 am EST, 28th June 2019
ATP Antalya, Turkey
After being 0-6 on grass courts so far in his career, Pablo Carreno-Busta finally managed to get his first win on this surface in main draws on ATP tour. And not only that, he managed to string a couple of them together and get into the semifinals of the tournament in Antalya. He was helped a bit by the high ranking that allowed him to skip the first round as a #4 seed. In the second round, he faced a very tricky opponent in Kevin Krawietz. German doesn't have much singles experience at this level, but as a great doubles player, his skill-set is very well suited to the grass courts. He has a good serve and a silky-smooth volley, that can give a lot of problems to many players on the tour. But Pablo managed to find the answer and after saving 4 set points in the first set, he won by 2-0. In quarterfinals, he had to play another player with a game that suits these courts really well. Bernard Tomic is known for his tennis on this surface and he didn't disappoint in this one. Known for his lack of effort at times, Tomic stayed focused throughout 3-set battle vs the Spaniard, but it was not enough to win it. Pablo raised the level of his game, after losing the first set, brought a bunch of balls back in play and drew numerous forced errors from the Aussie.
In the next round, he's playing someone with very similar experience on grass courts before this tournament. Lorenzo Sonego's record in main draws was 0-2 before coming to Turkey. But, making small adjustments in his game, helped him to notch his first win on this surface, and add a couple of more on top of that one. Enough to turn his negative record into a positive one, all of a sudden. And none of those wins were easy. He was playing some experience guys with a lot of wins on this surface, starting with Joao Sousa in the first round, who was coming off a strong tournament in Halle. After that, he fought from a set down against pesky Prajnesh Gunneswaran, but his biggest win was definitely the one in the quarterfinals. Winner of Hertogenbosch and a two-time finalist in this event - Adrian Mannarino, was denied his entry into the semifinals for the first time, since the birth of this event in 2017. Young Italian once again proved his toughness, ability to adjust and his competitive nature. After the first set, it seemed like Mannarino is just too strong for Sonego on these grass courts. But Lorenzo kept fighting, waiting for his opportunities and pounced once they presented itself.
These two players never met before, so we'll have to predict how they'll match up against each other in these conditions based on very limited data. Pablo won two matches so far. In the first one, he just had to get a good read on his opponents serve and put the ball past him, once he approached the net. In the second one, he wasn't really under pressure all that much, with Tomic pushing the ball, rather than hitting it with purpose. This will be the first time, where his defense will really have to be on a very high level because Sonego is taking the ball on the rise and going for the winners. I'm not saying that Carreno doesn't stand a chance, because he's a top-tier defender, but he will definitely get tested by some quality ball striking from the young Italian.
Betting odds & prediction
The line opened with Sonego being favored in this one, which is a small surprise for me. He is obviously getting a lot of respect for that Mannarino win, but he is getting another pesky opponent with the ability to put balls back in play and force him into the extra shot. Adding the ability to hold his serve at a higher rate then Mannarino, I believe Carreno-Busta will not be an easy opponent for Sonego here. I expect a proper dog fight here and experience factor tilting the scale in Pablo's favor.
Josh's Pick: Pablo Carreno-Busta +112
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