Matteo Berrettini and Casper Ruud will square off on Tuesday at Flushing Meadows with a place in the US Open semifinals on the line.
Berrettini had a poor preparation ahead of the US Open, losing in the first round in both Cincinnati and Montreal, but the Australian Open semifinalist managed to regain his rhytm over the past week in order to reach the quarterfinals in New York for a second consecutive year. Berrettini did lose 4 sets in his 4 matches, but he also faced a couple of challenging opponents, mainly Andy Murray (whom he defeated in 4) and Davidovich Fokina in the previous round (36 76 63 46 62).
Casper Ruud is having the best season of his career so far, reaching the finals at the French Open and Miami, as well as the semis in Rome and in Montreal a few weeks ago. Here in New York Ruud, had a rather easy draw, playing Edmund, Van Rijthoven, Paul and Moutet. He lost four sets along the way (just like Berrettini) and had a 5 setter against Paul in the third round.
Ruud leads the H2H 3-2, but trails 0-1 on hard courts. He won the most recent meeting six weeks ago in the Gstaad final, on clay (46 76 62). A year ago we could have said that the hard courts in New York favor Berrettini, but Ruud’s results on the surface this year have been amazing, so we can’t really make that statement anymore.
I think this has the potential to be a real thriller. Both players are looking good, but both also showed some weaknesses. It’s fair to say both had ups and downs so far at the US Open.
They have been really similar in terms of their level of play, they are also pretty much the same caliber of player, so for me it is hard to envision how and why either of them would dominate this matchup from start to finish. I think it is much more reasonable to expect a hard fought encounter with both guys having their moments of being in control – much like it happened six weeks ago in Gstaad. They seem too close to separate right now, and it’s not like one has a favorable matchup over the other either.
My initial thought here was to take the over 40 games, but that implies we kinda need a tiebreak if we want the bet to win in 4 sets. I do believe it will go 5, or that we will see at least a tiebreak, but I don’t think it is smart to rely on that. As a consequence, I will choose a lower price for extra security and bet the over 3,5 sets. It seems like a pretty safe wager to me. Prediction: Matteo Berrettini – Casper Ruud 7-6 2-6 4-6 6-3 6-4.