2019 ATP Brisbane Has Dimitrov, Nishikori, and Raonic Looking To Get On Track
Steen Kirby, Tennis Atlantic
ATP Brisbane is the start of the season for a good number of top players as they prepare for the Australian Open under the Australian sun. With the early rounds complete we take a look at the quarterfinals and beyond at this ATP 250 on hard courts.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga vs Alex De MinaurEmbed from Getty Images
Operating under a protected ranking, former AO finalist Tsonga has defeated Thanasi Kokkinakis and Taro Daniel to reach this stage. He benefited from Rafael Nadal’s withdrawal due to fatigue before Nadal was due to play his opening match. Home hero ADM, a rising star, represents a far tougher challenge though. ADM plays well at home and hasn’t dropped a set so far. Tsonga has experience but he’s still a bit shaky at times and I’d expect De Minaur to reach the semis.
Daniil Medvedev vs Milos RaonicEmbed from Getty Images
After a rough 2018 for the formerly top 10 Raonic, he’s in good form so far, defeating Aljaz Bedene and Miomir Kecmanovic in straight sets, with his serve game firing. This is another match where the young gun should have an edge over the legacy name though. The rising Medvedev (age 22) got a bye into round 2 and eased past a still sluggish Andy Murray in straight sets. Medvedev has dark horse potential at the AO and should be favored here.
Jeremy Chardy vs Yasutaka UchiyamaEmbed from Getty Images
Chardy upset a spider bit Nick Kyrgios and has once again reached the quarters of an ATP event. He’s not an elite player, but the Frenchman excels at playing at a good (but not great) level. He should have an edge over the less experienced Uchiyama, similarly to how he edged past J.L. Struff in three sets in round 1. The qualifier Uchiyama edged Ugo Humbert in round 1 before stunning Kyle Edmund in straight sets in round 2. It’s been a disappointing start for British tennis in Australia.
Grigor Dimitrov vs Kei NishikoriEmbed from Getty Images
These two generational talents have significant history, including a 2017 Brisbane final meeting that saw Dimitrov prevail. Nishikori has won 4 of 5 meetings though and after a routine win against Denis Kudla he should be favored against the inconsistent Dimitrov. Dimitrov is aiming to return to the top 10 after a disappointing 2018, and a win against the top 10 Nishikori would be huge though. I expect a battle with Nishikori taking it.
Medvedev d. De Minaur
Nishikori d. Chardy
A rematch of last year’s Sydney finals in the semis of Brisbane, Medvedev is likely ahead of ADM at this point in their careers but it should be close. Nishikori is expected to lift the title though as he’s the most talented player left in the draw and his form looks solid.
Nishikori d. Medvedev