Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in the Running for 2018 ATP Shanghai Title
Steen Kirby, Tennis Atlantic
The second to last ATP Masters 1000 tournament of the year, the Shanghai Rolex Masters, kicks off this week with Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic as the top seeds. Here is your look at China’s marquee ATP World Tour tournament.
Roger Federer will look to bounce back from a disappointing US Open defeat. He’ll open against China’s own Ze Zhang or current Tokyo finalist Daniil Medvedev. Andrey Rublev won his first match since the Summer in Beijing but he’ll still be an underdog against Roberto Bautista Agut. I’ll back Milos Raonic to reach the third round, defeating a qualifier and RBA/Rublev. Federer should be a slight favorite against Raonic.Embed from Getty Images
Sam Querrey should luck out a bit with his draw, Diego Schwartzman is seeded but not in great form, a qualifier/Robin Haase also shouldn’t be a difficult challenge. Kei Nishikori should be fatigued from reaching the Tokyo final, but he’ll get past Yibing Wu/Zhe Li. I’ll back Querrey to upset a tired Nishikori.
Juan Martin Del Potro is in the Beijing final, and given the fatigue factor I’ll back Richard Gasquet to beat Leonardo Mayer and Del Potro to reach round 3. Stan Wawrinka looks set to meet him at this stage. Wawrinka is coming back into form, he opens with a struggling Borna Coric, and then will get Nick Kyrgios or a qualifier. Kyrgios is also struggling right now, Gasquet has an edge against Wawrinka.Embed from Getty Images
Dominic Thiem will take on Matthew Ebden and Frances Tiafoe, he’ll be favored into the third round with Matthew Ebden/Frances Tiafoe up in round 2, and then Marton Fucsovics favored to beat Damir Dzumhur and Jack Sock/Peter Gojowczyk before falling to Thiem in round 3.Embed from Getty Images
Marin Cilic or Kyle Edmund will emerge into the quarterfinal from their section, Edmund is in good form and should be favored against Filip Krajinovic and Adrian Mannarino/Andreas Seppi, both of whom are in poor form. Cilic was surprised early in his last tournament, but Nicolas Jarry/Mischa Zverev are very beatable right now. Cilic over Edmund is my pick.
Alexander Zverev isn’t playing near his best right now and I have Denis Shapovalov upsetting him after Shapovalov edges current Beijing finalist Nikoloz Basilashvili. I’ll back Alex De Minaur to make a run, defeating a qualifier and Pablo Carreno Busta/qualfier before falling to Shapovalov.Embed from Getty Images
Stefanos Tsitsipas faces Gael Monfils in round 1, Karen Khachanov or Steve Johnson will follow, Kevin Anderson is favored to win the section with wins over Albert Ramos/qualifier and Tsitsipas in round 3.
In the bottom section Novak Djokovic will be favored all the way through as Jeremy Chardy/Max Marterer, and Gilles Simon don’t present a huge challenge. It’s Simon’s section to lose through the first two rounds as Marco Cecchinato and Hyeon Chung/qualifier are not in the best of form. Djokovic over Simon is the pick.Embed from Getty Images
Federer d. Querrey
Thiem d. Gasquet
Shapovalov d. Cilic
Djokovic d. Anderson
Federer and Djokovic should roll into the final with Djokovic having an edge. Look for Shapovalov and Thiem to spring some upsets as they also post solid results.
Federer d. Thiem
Djokovic d. Shapovalov
Djokovic d. Federer