Our tennis expert Graham Ruthven has the latest Australian Open odds and tips for the men's quarter-finals.
Only eight players remain in the men’s singles at the 2022 Australian Open, so everyone left in the first Grand Slam of the year is dreaming of going all the way. With Novak Djokovic not involved, this has been the most open major in the men’s game for a long time which has made predicting the bracket even tougher.
Rafael Nadal has been resurgent after returning from injury while US Open champion Daniil Medvedev is living up to his billing as the top seed in the men’s singles. The following three matches promise to be the most compelling of the 2022 Australian Open quarter-finals.
Denis Shapovalov (14) v Rafael Nadal (6)
There is a growing sense this might be Nadal’s best chance to win a record 21st Grand Slam without having to rely on his dominance at Roland Garros. The Spaniard has dropped just one set in the four matches he has played at the 2022 Australian Open so far although this will be the biggest physical test he has faced at Melbourne Park.
Projections had this quarter-final as a meeting between Sascha Zverev and Nadal, but it’s Denis Shapovalov who awaits the 35-year-old instead. The young Canadian is an excellent all-rounder and certainly has the game to trouble Nadal. Indeed, Shapovalov is a dynamic, athletic player with the pure shot-making ability to win points from the back of the court.
The straight sets victory over Zverev was the biggest win of Shapovalov’s career to date, but he has more in the tank. The 22-year-old is playing with a calmness and an intelligence that suggests he could make the semi-finals of a Grand Slam for the second time after making the final four at Wimbledon last year.
Gael Monfils (17) v Matteo Berrettini (7)
Renowned for his flair and capacity for entertainment, Gael Monfils has sharpened his competitive edge in recent times. The 35-year-old has yet to drop a set at this year’s Australian Open with Monfils already matching his best-ever result at Melbourne Park by making the quarter-finals. He is, however, in good shape to go even further.
By beating Pablo Carreno Busta on Sunday, Matteo Berrettini made the quarter-finals of the Australian Open for the first time, meaning he has now made the final eight of all four Grand Slams. The Italian is consistent on all surfaces, but the Melbourne Park hard courts look to be a good fit for his powerful game.
Berrettini’s serve is arguably his biggest weapon and it was in good order against Carreno Busta when the Italian won 87% of his first serve points. Berrettini also struck 57 winners which illustrates his potency from the baseline. Monfils will need to be in his best form as a returner to stand a chance of getting through this one.
Felix Auger-Aliassime (9) v Daniil Medvedev (2)
With Djokovic not involved, Medvedev is the highest seed in the men’s singles and the clear favourite in the Australian Open odds outright winner market.
He has been in strong form despite being pushed by Nick Kyrgios and Maxime Cressy. The Russian made the final of last year’s Australian Open where he was beaten in straight sets by Djokovic. Now, he is aiming to take the next step after winning his first Grand Slam title at the 2021 US Open.
Medvedev was unsettled by Cressy’s serve-and-volley approach in his fourth round match and Felix Auger-Aliassime could borrow some of those tactics to get at his opponent in the quarter-finals. Auger-Aliassime did well to brush aside Marin Cilic in his last match and has played mature tennis at Melbourne Park over the last week or so.
There’s no doubt Auger-Aliassime has the power to stick with Medvedev from the back of the court. He might, however, struggle to break down the Russian who is renowned for his defensive skills. Auger-Aliassime has never beaten Medvedev in three previous meetings. Now would be a good time for him to put one on the board.